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Dear Virginia Annual Conference:

United Methodist churches throughout Virginia continue the return to in-person worship! And we are doing so by continuing to emphasize safety.

Currently, there are 126 United Methodist churches in the Virginia Conference offering in-person services in sanctuaries through the Pioneer worship format or through Drive-In worship services. Thanks be to God for the hard work that the pastors, district superintendents, laity, and Healthy Church Teams for these churches have done.

This past Sunday, I attended a Drive-In worship service at John Wesley United Methodist Church in Harrisonburg with the Rev. Victor Gomez, superintendent for the Harrisonburg District. What an uplifting and joyous service on a glorious day! The service, officiated by the Rev. Costella Forney, was Spirit-filled and all attending were very engaged. God’s presence could be felt!

As you evaluate returning to worship, please know that there are many resources from the conference, and many fellow Virginia United Methodists who have re-opened churches who can share their experiences. For additional information, please see here and contact your district superintendent.

Thank you for your service and perseverance in these challenging times.

Peace and Blessings,
Bishop Sharma D. Lewis

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From left, Costalla Florney, Victor Gomez, parking lot at John Wesley UMC, Harrisonburg.