Since March 22, Durham Friends Meeting has been conducting worship via Zoom rather than in our Meetinghouse. We have been gratified to see good participation in Meeting during these months of physical isolation from one another. We know that there are some members of the Meeting who are eager to have us return to the Meetinghouse to worship together. At the same time, we know there are many among us for whom catching the virus could be life threatening — a risk not worth running.
For the foreseeable future the Meeting will continue to worship primarily via Zoom.
At the same time, we have started experimenting with a hybrid form of worship in which we will worship via Zoom and some people will worship in the Meetinghouse using electronic devices to connect to Zoom. (We expect Clarabel Marstaller’s memorial service will use such a hybrid approach.) As we move forward, we will let you know when it is possible for some to return to worship in the Meetinghouse and what you should do if and when you do come to the Meetinghouse. Everyone who comes to the Meetinghouse will be asked to wear masks and maintain safe social distance from one another. There will continue to be no shared refreshments.
We are likely to continue holding worship primarily via Zoom until a vaccine or proven anti-viral medicines are developed. All future decisions and formats are dependent on CDC recommendations. Finding ways to worship together and at the same time ensuring the safety of all of our members continue to be our two guiding stars. We appreciate the assistance New England Yearly Meeting and others have given us as we learn the possibilities and potential pitfalls of such hybrid worship.
We will be adapting and adjusting as we proceed. It is our hope that this format will allow for more people to be a part of our worshiping community. It is our hope that we can come together to support, encourage and walk with each other in this time of challenge and unknowingness. May the spirit of love and peace be our guide. — From Members of Ministry and Counsel: Martha Hinshaw Sheldon, clerk, Doug Bennett, Renee Cote, Joyce Gibson, Tess Hartford, Brown Lethem, Wendy Schlotterbeck.
- August 16: Leslie Manning
- August 23: Max Carter (New Garden Friends, NC)
- August 30: Unprogrammed Worship