I hope that all of you are doing well. This certainly has been a challenging time for all of us.  However, our churches have adapted and continue to do ministry in our communities.  I have had reports of people getting saved, high attendance for outdoor services, many people viewing online services, and offerings are up.  One truth, among many that has been revealed during this time, is that the Church is much more than just meeting in a building. 

In response to some questions regarding the Association’s advice for going back into our buildings, I have met with our Association Moderators and our Union Moderators.  Of course, it is understood that each Church has the freedom to make their own decisions. By no means are we dictating what any of our churches have to do, but we feel responsible to offer advice and suggestions.  

Our Advice would be to proceed patiently and with much caution.  Knowing that many of our churches have adapted and found ways of reaching their congregations, there should not be a need to rush back into our buildings.  We do believe it is being good citizens and demonstrating obedience to scripture to follow our Government and Court Orders (Romans 13:1-2).  With that being said, even at the approval of court orders and Government officials, as Pastors and Church Leaders we should still be careful about going back to church as usual.  Hopefully, at the appropriate time of returning to our buildings, we would first put some safety measures in place. This is also in consideration of knowing that in some of our counties, the confirmed cases are on the rise. 

Based on articles and advice from NC Baptist State Convention, the following are things to consider before entering back into our buildings:    

  1. Pray and Seek God for wisdom on what is best for your  congregation.

  2. Consult local health officials for guidance on safety and hygiene.

  3. Consider the elderly and the vulnerable, who may feel torn between attending out of obligation and their own personal health if the church doors are open.

  4. Consider whether your facility can accommodate a worship gathering, while still practicing social distancing.

  5. Whenever you plan to regather, make a plan, and communicate it as much and as early as possible to your congregation. 

  6. Consider two worship services, to cut down on how many people are in the building at one time.

  7. Provide multiple stations for hand sanitizer.

  8. Provide a setting where people can spread out across the congregation.

  9. Continue with instructions for social distancing (no hugging, shaking hands, etc.)

 

I love the following Quote by Brain Upshaw, “Above all, please do not see the choice about what to do on Sunday as an issue of‘Reopening.’ The Church has never closed! A biblical understanding of the church acknowledges that the church is the people, not the steeple.”

With all of that being said, it is especially important to be Gracious to Christians who have a different viewpoint than you do, and respect what other churches may decide to do.  As the Church, we want to be sure that we demonstrate unity, support, and love during this time.   The World is Watching!

COVID 19 Update

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