Pastoral Pandemic Putt Putt. Yeah, it’s a thing. I just made it up.
In conversations with church members via telephone, Zoom, Church Chat, Facebook Messenger, Livestream sidebars, etc., people consistently share their grief over lack of social contact. They particularly express some sorrow over lack of face-to-face contact with their minister. Add to that, when I see you in the grocery store or the drugstore or on the sidewalk downtown, even with masks on I can see eyes light up and the tension of a smile shape the side of your face. Best of all, I love when a church family with an SUV backseat of church children sidles up beside me at a traffic light, and the school-aged passengers excitedly wave.
In light of this dearth of shared space, I’ve invented Pastoral Pandemic Putt Putt. Here’s how it works. Every Friday in July is Pastoral Pandemic Putt Putt day. If you or your family need or would enjoy some time with your minister—for serious chat or to tell the corniest jokes you know or just to catch up—find your way to this form, sign up on the day and hour you choose (one participant or family per hour block), bring your putter, golf ball, water bottle to McPherson Park Putt Putt on the corner of Main Street and E. Park Avenue and everyone wear a mask. No mask, no play with the pastor. We will enjoy a game of putt putt and some good conversation—all while staying socially distanced. If before or after our game, you or your family wants to enjoy a picnic, there are tables throughout the park.
You may be asking, why just putt putt? Why can’t we go to a movie or go hiking in North Carolina or ride our bikes up Paris Mountain together? Well…to be honest…I live next door to the putt putt course, and I don’t have to burn a lot of gas, time or energy to make this happen. Also, it’s a great way to walk, talk and give some attention to you and your children in an activity that warrants no extreme stamina or skill. It just seemed like a cool thing to do.
So… Pastoral Pandemic Putt Putt. Yeah, it’s a thing. I just made it up. See you Friday.

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