It’s been a busy week with Saundra and myself. I spoke at her church’s Mother’s Day banquet on Tuesday evening - she spoke at Cedar Grove’s last night. Her men cooked baked steak, mashed potatoes, green beans, and a cake. Cedar Grove women went to Jimmy Columbo’s restaurant for Italian food. My mom was able to attend both dinners.
Today we have a bridal shower at my church; Sunday is a shower at Saundra’s church.
Meanwhile, Saundra pressure-washed the deck and we plan to bring out the summer furniture. If you see us sitting on the deck, stop by and say “hi”.
Our calendars for May and June are really filling up as COVID fades in our minds in our area.
Which brings me to the next point:
I know I haven’t said anything about COVID in several months. That’s because case counts had been low and staying low locally. But that’s changing.
Wood County cases have been running about 15-20 actives cases during most of April and the first week of May. But the latest figures show 46 cases in Wood County, a doubling of the case count in the last week. That’s still green, but the trend is alarming. Where the state map was totally green a while back, now it looks like succotash - mostly green beans with about 1/3rd yellow corn counties. Wirt and Pleasants Counties are still green, too.
Folks, it is probably time to get that booster or even 2nd booster shot if it’s been four months or more since your last shot. Although this BA-2 variety of Omicron is “less severe” than the previous variants, that’s all relative - it may not make much difference to a healthy 30-year old, but it could still cause lots of problems if you are in your 70’s or 80’s or have pre-existing lung or heart issues. To go back to my earlier analogy, COVID is turning from a sprinkle to a heavier drizzle, so it’s time to look toward waterproofing ourselves. If you are particularly vulnerable, you might want to consider wearing a mask again in crowded places.
What does a booster do for you? It reactivates your quick reaction antibodies. Remember that there are two lines of defense the body has - quick reaction antibodies which attack invading viruses in the noses, throat, and lungs. And then there are the long-term B-cells that take a week or so to get into action, producing additional antibodies and sending white blood cells after the invaders. The vaccines create both - as does an active infection. The advantage of being vaccinated is that the B-cells are there waiting - it takes an additional week or so for B-cells to be created from scratch in an unvaccinated person, where they are sitting “on idle” in a vaccinated person. The boosters rev up production of the quick reaction antibodies so that a bunch of them are now circulating, ready to fight the virus at the borders of the body. But those quick-reaction antibodies die off naturally if not used - about three-quarters are gone after three or four months. That’s where the boosters step in and get the antibody force back up to full strength.
Most pharmacies are still providing boosters and vaccinations.
At this point, we aren’t planning any changes in our protocols at the church, but we are watching local case counts.
PPRC Meeting this Monday evening at 6 pm in Fellowship Hall.
Bible Study on Wednesday at 7 pm
Readings for Sunday
Sermon - The Table of Jesus
Acts 11:1-18 - Peter preaches to Gentiles
Psalm 148 - Praise the Lord
Revelation 21:1-6 - A New Heaven and a New Earth
John 13:31-35 - Love One Another
They’ll Know We are Christians - TFWS 2223
I Want Jesus to Walk with Me - UMH 521
Where Charity and Love Prevail - UMH 549
Jesu, Jesu - UMH 432
Blest Be the Tie that Binds - UMH 557