How Will We Worship this Sabbath?
We are launching in to uncharted territory, I've never pastored inside of a pandemic before. None of us has been church during a pandemic before. Which means we are all learning. New words are popping up and becoming a part of our conversations. Social Distancing. Flatten the Curve. There are more, all surrounding the identification of a virus now known as COVID19.
If you are new to hearing about COVID19, please click here to view an information presentation by our own Lydiah Mpysis.
In light of recent developments and in consultation with the elders and leadership team, I feel that it is time to move to an online format. This means a small group of less than ten individuals at the church on Sabbath morning to lead the service, and all others will be invited to join through streaming only.
It is our desire to flatten the curve and not overwhelm our medical system. The truth is that most of us will weather the virus well enough, but there isn't any innate immunity among us.
This decision takes in to consideration the request by the North American Division that all church buildings close for two weeks.
Our President and state Governor asked for groups to be kept less than 10 and the CDC said no groups over 50 for the next 8 weeks, I believe we can make the decision to protect each other by choosing to be a streaming service only beginning this Sabbath.
This is a difficult decision to make because I love gathering with each of you from week to week to worship our great God. The Bible tells us to forsake not the gathering together for worship, and thankfully through modern technology we will not. We will find new ways to connect as we worship. We will find new ways to be the church in our communities.
P.S. Can you email or text me a picture of each person in your family? I will print these out and tape them to a chair in our church. Then instead of leading in an empty church, your faces will be there creating a virtual community. Then join us on Sabbath morning and we'll show you what it looks like!
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7
In recent days, we have heard of concerns about the continuous rise and spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). People are asking how to stay safe and asking if there are new protocols when attending worship services.
During this time of uncertainty, trust God, and don't be anxious, get plenty of rest, eat healthily and make conscious and thoughtful decisions about your health and the health of those around you.
Up-to-date information is a good solution for anxiety. Visit trustworthy websites for reliable information—a list of resources has been provided at the bottom of this page.
- The best practice to prevent any illness is to wash your hands frequently using the proper technique: wet-lather-scrub-rinse-dry.
- Use hand sanitizer when soap and water aren't available. Keep a supply handy at your desk, in your car, and your purse or briefcase.
- Avoid touching your face, specifically your eyes, nose, and mouth, as this is how germs enter your body.
- Cough into your elbow, NOT your hand.
- Stay home if you're feeling sick.
- If you have underlying health conditions, consider joining our live stream instead of coming in person.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Pray for the nurses and doctors assigned to care for the sick and the scientists who are searching for an effective vaccine.
- For now, avoid handshakes, hugs, and kisses.
- Fist and elbow bumps are appropriate, and safer, as a friendly greeting.
- Make sure hand sanitizer is available as people enter and exit the church.
- If circumstances require that you must stay at home for an extended period of time, here are several items you will want to have on hand:
- Plenty of paper products; toilet paper, tissue, and paper towels.
- Cleaning supplies.
- A 14-day supply of non-perishable food items.
- A 30-day supply of your prescription medicine.
- Should your child's school have to close for a while, taking these measures will assist in the transition from classroom learning to home school:
- Coordinate with family and friends for care alternatives.
- Have supplies on hand for continued learning and fun activities.
- Check with your local school for what school closing guidelines to follow.