Newsletter: Sunday, July 5,2020
July 1, 2020, 5:54 AM

St. John’s Episcopal Church 



The past few weeks have been unusually eventful for our staff at St. John’s, which is why we were not able to provide a recorded worship service or newsletter last week.  First of all, please let Marjie know you are thinking of her at the recent death of her brother in Fayetteville.  Due to his illness and death she was out of town several days.  I know you join me in extending to her our sincere sympathy at her loss.  Our organist Gabe has been out of town on vacation as has our videographer Nolan.  Our pianist Dagmar is recovering from hip replacement surgery and Royce and I were on vacation in Little Rock last week.

I had hoped we would be able to resume in person worship this coming Sunday, July 5.  However, the recent sharp increase of Covid-19 infections in Phillips County has placed us well beyond the 10 infections per 10,000 population rate allowed in the guidelines established by Bishop Benfield.  A few weeks ago the percentage of active cases to county population was 7.8%.  As of the bishop’s last report it was 24.5% and as of today it appears to be closer to 30%.  So, where do we go from here?

Monday morning I met with Sr. Warden Mike Fielder and Jr. Warden Jane Hornor to discuss the conditions under which St. John’s should reopen.  While we want to reopen as soon as is responsibly possible, we agreed that it would be unwise to move forward with reopening at this time.  At the very least, we want to see the active infection rate begin to drop instead of steadily climbing.  In the meantime we will resume emailing you video recordings for Sunday worship.  As soon as we receive the necessary equipment we will switch to live streaming our services on Sunday morning.

I will be leading Morning Prayer on Facebook Live at 9 a.m. one or two mornings each week, beginning Wednesday July 8.  Specific details will be included in next week’s newsletter, which you should receive on July 7.  Our next recorded service will be for Sunday, July 12 and will arrive in your email on the 11th

Thank you for your continued support of St. John’s during this challenging time.  As always, remember that our lovely building is not the church. You and I are the church and God’s presence is not limited to a particular place and time. I will be glad when we are back in “church.” Until then, I am thankful that we continue to be the church to one another and our community.


Fr. Ray+



Long time St. John’s member Kappi Pillow died on Tuesday morning, June 30.  Kappi loved her Lord and her church and will be missed.  She was blessed with a long life filled with service to her family, friends, community and church.  Service arrangements were not available at the time this newsletter was emailed to the parish. Father Ray expects to have service information within the next day or two and you are welcome to contact him for details.

Please keep the following in your prayers:   Debra Richardson, David Henderson, Kathy Sullivan, Larry Bryant, Lynn Jordan, Ray Worley, Jim Howe, Nancy Howe, Parker Pace, Heather Treat,  Courtney Turner,  Rita Merritt, Jo Boone Wild,  Gloria Higginbotham,  Vivian Wright, Al Martin, William Brandon, Cedric Franks, Jr, Jeannie McCabe, Karen Foster, Kathleen Gibson, Jeffery Mink, Cole Jefferies,  Pat Wheeler, Carol Spencer, Pat Jeffries,  Tommy & Carrie Galloway, Bonnie & Charles Rowland, Joe Tom Cunningham,  Pat Delk, Duncan Highet, Lee McCarty Boyd, Jo Liddy, Riley Kate Haas, Danny Hutchens, Carla Myers, Katrina Justice, Joan Henderson, Dagmar Bergan, Bob Wright,  the family of Kappi Pillow, and the family of Marie Simon.


Angels of Grace and Anchor Mission ministries: Choose any items from their wish list which includes:  paper towels, toilet paper, paper plates, laundry detergent, bleach, dish soap, and cleaning supplies.

Humane Society of the Delta Donations needed include puppy, dog, cat, & kitten food

Please place all of these donations in the red wagon in the chapel to be blessed.

Grace Food Pantry: plastic bags go in the labeled container in the narthex.

Thank you for your donations.  They are all greatly appreciated and needed.


MAINTAINING GOOD SOCIAL DISTANCE: At least SIX FEET is very important in preventing the spread of COVID-19.

Everyone please take care and follow the guidelines for this virus.  DISTANCING when you have to get out, WEARING YOUR MASK and WASHING YOUR HANDS when available or USING HAND SANITIZER.