One of my fondest memories of my first year at Salem took place during worship when I sang a blessing for our students and teachers getting ready to go back to school. This year going back to school is going to be quite different! I still want to offer a blessing for our students and teachers and others who are starting a school year whether in-person or remotely or some combination of the two. Please join with me in praying for all who are beginning classes currently and their families.

 

I invite our students (of all ages) and teachers to come to church on Wednesday, September 2 for a time of blessing.  You are welcome to drive through the parking lot between 5:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.  I ask that you stop for a prayer of blessing with me.  Thanks to generous friends, I have some small gifts for each student and teacher to receive with our best wishes for a fantastic, learning-filled year!

 

I hope that many of our students and teachers will be able to join us after the drive through time of blessing for our vesper service at 7:00 p.m. on the church lawn.  We will have a special time of prayer with our church family for the new school year.  We especially extend our invitation to our Noah’s Ark families and teachers.  They will begin a new school year on September 14 with in-person classes on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

 

If your student cannot come by the church in person on Wednesday, September 2, please contact me directly and we can set up a time to receive their personalized blessing and gift.  You are welcome to call/text me (410-627-1944) or email me pastor@salemunited.org">pastor@salemunited.org

 

Here are two prayers for the beginning of the school year:

 

God ofbacktoschool-blessings wisdom and might, we praise you for the wonders of our being, for mind, body, and spirit.  Be with our children as they begin a new school year.  Bless them and their teachers and staff.  Give them strength and grace as their bodies grow; wisdom and knowledge to their minds as they search for understanding; and peace and zeal to their spirits.  We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.  (prayer from Catholic Household Blessings and Prayers)

 

God of knowledge and wisdom, bless all students young and old, as they begin a new school year.  Help them discover and develop the gifts you have given.  As they grow in knowledge, help them to also grow in kindness and compassion, learning respect for themselves and others.  We ask your blessing on parents and all those who care for students.  Strengthen them to surround our students with encouragement, support and love.  Remind us that wherever we go, you are always with us.  Fill us with the joy of learning so that we may be better equipped to be your servants.  Amen.  (from faceforward)

 

As we think about the start of a new school year and the re-opening of our church building, I want to remind you of the rest of the church schedule, especially the church office.  The church office is open on a limited basis.  You are welcome to call ahead and make an appointment with me if you would like to come to the office.  Please remain mindful of the need to maintain physical distance and wear masks while inside the building as well as to wipe surfaces as you leave.  Beginning September 14, we plan to have the church office staffed Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9:00 a.m. until 11:30 a.m.  Depending on my schedule, I will be in the church office additional days and hours.  Please continue to contact me with your pastoral needs as well as your prayer requests.

 

In Christ’s service,

Pastor Stacey  

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