New Faces Join Online Easter Service

Several missed and beloved faces will be joining our online Easter service this year!

In an effort to include those we haven’t seen for a while, Visitation Pastor Diane Goulson recorded a few of our members who live in senior living facilities. Elaine Blomquist, Arlene Hilding, Jane Hines, and Mary Lou Most are able to participate this year, another benefit of online worship. (Lorraine Clemmer and another member attempted, but were not up to it on the day of visitation.)

Each member will read a verse or two of the Easter Gospel, and these recordings will be interspersed with readings from Confirmation students. 

“One person got choked up reading her verse because of the power of what she heard and the power of what was in it,” says Pastor Diane. 

Each member stressed how grateful they felt to be included. “Everyone said ‘Thank you for letting me be a part of this.’ And these are not people who are used to being recorded. God Bless them for doing this!” she says laughing.

The pandemic has been difficult for those in senior living homes. When most locations were forced to close their doors to outside visitors in March 2020, Pastor Diane resorted to making phone calls and writing cards to stay connected. However, some members have difficulty with sight or hearing, so each person requires different forms of communication. 

A year later, everyone in senior living on the visitation list has had vaccines and Pastor Diane is able to see them at least once a month for an hour. “We talk, pray together, have communion together, laugh and cry. I’ve gotten to know many of them well so I can ask about their families, what keeps them going.” 

Diane Goulson became HTLC’s Visitation Pastor in September 2019. In that role, she visits our members who are homebound, sick, dealing with cancer, struggling with grief, and anyone with health issues. She is also the staff support for the Grief Support Group and a member of the Amazing Grays, HTLC’s close-knit group of retirees. 

A cancer survivor herself, Pastor Diane was diagnosed in October 2018 with Pancreatic Cancer, Stage 1. As of August 2019, she is officially in remission.

“My visits are supposed to be for their benefit,” she says. “But I have to admit, sometimes I walk out of there and think ‘That was all for me.’ I get to hear such wonderful stories that humble me and keep me in awe of people that our society sees as vulnerable and weak. But I hear stories of strength and hope and trust that they have in their faith. It’s such a gift.”

Thank you to Elaine Blomquist, Arlene Hilding, Jane Hines, and Mary Lou Most and Lorraine Clemmer for being a part of our Easter service and Pastor Diane for facilitating this! 
Written by Rose M. Fife, HTLC Communications Specialist
April 2, 2021

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