Important Update (COVID-19)

“Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.” - Romans 12:10

Dear Friends, We are currently experiencing something that few if any of us have ever had to deal with - and even for the most courageous and faithful followers of Jesus, anxieties are high! I am grateful to share with you that your church leaders have been earnestly praying and seeking God to discern how we can respond at this time. On Thursday, as information was changing, nearly by the hour, I shared with them communication from our Presbytery leadership and asked them to specifically pray about our worship, our gatherings and the ways we might be able to support our community during this epidemic, and especially during the fallout from school and other closings. They prayed. As Friday turned into Saturday, I began having conversations with pastors and leaders from partner churches and ministries as well as our own Mayor. The needs of our elderly, our children and families in financial need weighing heavy on all of our hearts. Cautiously and deliberately, the Session began to share some of their considerations via e-mail, and then around the Special meeting we called between worship services. Your Session is a tremendous group of leaders who have a great love and care for you, for our community and for the gospel of Jesus Christ. Out of that love and care, they discerned that for the time being we should: 1) suspend in-person gatherings for worship 2) suspend on-premise church-sponsored gatherings (exempting AA & NA) 3) close Up With Kids Daycare, as of Wednesday These decisions were not easy. But by God’s grace, they were unanimous. We understand that these are troubling times and anxieties are running high, and with that in mind, we also decided some other very important measures: 1) We will conduct live online worship at 11:00 AM, which you can access through our website or our Facebook page (you do not need to have a Facebook account to view it) 2) The Session will be reaching out by phone to every member over the next week to offer prayer, comfort and address any concerns or needs you may have. 3) We are readying ourselves to respond to additional needs in our community as they arise, by keeping in close contact with our civic leadership - stay tuned on that! And there is one additional item - I am committing to do a Facebook live every day until we are once again gathering for worship in-person. One extra touchpoint for anyone who is interested - a brief word of encouragement, an invitation to pray “together” - something to keep us connected. If you’re not already, follow us on Facebook so you won’t miss these! While we are not gathering in-person right now, I hope you will see this as the tremendous opportunity that is for the church to be the church by loving and caring for each other outside of these walls and meeting the needs of our neighbors and community! Welcoming people to Grow in Jesus - a little differently than normal, Pastor Don

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