Have you met the new folks? How could anyone be new to Bethesda? We only started doing in person services a couple of months ago. Do you know that we had 57 new peo-ple join in 2020? We have continued to have gatherings with the Clergy and Associ-ates with newcomers, on Zoom instead of at a lunch, but with good success. We held a virtual Newcomers Orientation last fall. It makes you ask, what drew people to Bethesda before the pandemic and what draws them now? A beautiful gothic building in a tropical paradise? It is a draw. World class music? Yes. Sound teaching and life-affirming homilies? Yes. All these things play a role. We often ask at Newcomer’s orien-tation what brought you to Bethesda and what holds you here. The most common an-swer in the past was music. But you know what the most common answer is now? What are the answers that we get an overwhelming amount of the time? “The people.” “The people are so friendly.” “I have never felt more welcome anywhere.” This is why we con-tinue to have new people attend. The people don’t change during a pandemic. We cannot use the building as we would like. The music is still wonderful though we can only do a portion of what we would like to do. But we can still be warm, welcoming, and friendly, even via Zoom! This is what continues to draw people to Bethesda.

Now, here is an opportunity for you to express that welcome in a very tangible way: help on Easter Day. We have a great plan to allow everyone who wishes to come to Bethesda and receive communion on Easter Day. It will take a lot of work from a lot of people. Can you be one of those who gives for others? We need a few people to volunteer to be here at 5:30 a.m. to help with the 6:00 a.m. Sunrise Service. What we really need are people we can get to volunteer to be here starting at 6:30 a.m. to help throughout the morning. We need greeters, ushers, and volunteers help people find their way around campus. We know this is a big ask and are so grateful to all those willing to welcome our Easter wor-shippers by spending the morning with a great team of fellow parishioners. Please sign up to volunteer by clicking this link https://bbts.org/easter-volunteers/ and filling out the form or calling the church office at (561) 655-4554. I look forward to serving with you Easter day.

Fred Staley
Associate for Administration