3/21/20 COVID-19 Service Update

Church Service Update:
Saturday 3/21/20

All of us are experiencing a flood of ever-changing information regarding COVID-19 (coronavirus). This virus has gained more attention and a greater response than many of us have seen in our lifetimes.

It is our desire that the church doors always remain open, but the truth is that we don’t just go to church, we are the Church, and we exist for the world. Being a Jesus follower means you are part of the body of Christ. We are one body with many different parts. That means for Jesus to be with people who are mourning, anxious, sick, afraid, hurt economically, and worried about tomorrow, we are going to have to live out our faith every day, not just once a week. God never intended for our faith to be lived out in a building but to be an example to the community.

This virus is not silencing the Church or the Word of God. Instead we have a great opportunity to share our faith and be a living example of what it means to live a life more abundantly and to have hope. God made you to live with courage—not to create chaos. Now is NOT the time to stop giving your heart, time, resources, and energy to the work God is doing, but we also must act responsibly and with wisdom.

Part of the responsibility of the church is to protect those that are the most vulnerable. It is with this in mind that the decision has been made to not hold services in the church building for the remainder of March. Ministry will continue and God will bless the faithfulness of His church. We will still gather together to minister one to another and to lift each other up, but the venue will be different during this outbreak. Church giving can be done through “tithly” found on our webpage; mailed; or dropped off at the church office. The church offices will continue to be open during normal times.

We are fortunate to live in a time where technology brings people together over great distances. Although this is not your “traditional” service, it is a way that we can pray, worship, and honor God while being mindful of the current recommendations from our church leaders and the national, state, and local government.

This isn’t an easy decision to make but it is the correct one for the current situation. It is under the advice of our Ohio Network and General Council along with concerns from government officials about limiting the spread of COVID-19 that we are making this announcement.

It’s going to be a great weekend of worshiping our Mighty God and preaching the powerful gospel in a format that will be seen by far more viewers than our typical Sundays.

Here are just a few ways you can be the peace, hope, and light of Christ in your community:
• Be empathetic toward others. Don’t just shrug people off and tell them not to worry. Be a kind listener and show them the reason for the hope that you have.
• Choose to be the end of any unfounded rumors you hear. Instead, spread true information and hope. You are the light of the world.
• Offer to pray with people. It’s amazing how often people will gladly accept prayer, and it’s even more incredible to watch how talking to God with others can bring so much peace.
• Connect with others. We don’t have to be physically present to be emotionally available for one another. We can text, FaceTime, Skype, call, write letters, or email people we care about. Stay in touch with your family or friends digitally. Share prayer requests and pray for one another.

Finally, keep following Jesus. Set your focus on Him and let Him be your peace. Here’s what the Apostle Paul wrote to the Church in trying times:
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peach will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus,”
Philippians 4:6, 7.

As I have stated in yesterday’s update, I have taped 2 messages for the next 2 Sunday mornings to be shared at 10:30 via our church facebook page, our youtube page and our webpage. Here are the links to those:

Facebook is: Erie Shores A/G
Youtube is: Erie Shores Youtube
Webpage is: www.erieshoresag.org

Your main page for information will be our webpage. Please share this with others. I will be posting this information on our church facebook page, as well.

One other item that I mentioned was our ZOOM account. This info will be on our webpage as well. We will be implementing ZOOM in two ways:

  1. Beginning tomorrow morning at 10:30, our Children’s Ministry will be live using ZOOM. This will become a regular part of our children’s ministry every Sunday morning.
  2. On Sunday nights at 6:00, I will be hosting a Bible Study which will be interactive and keep us connected.

    Tuesday night prayer will still be held at the church since the participation is a low number.

    Thank you for your understanding in this matter and for your faithfulness to the Lord.

    Again, if you know of anyone who needs assistance, please let me know.

Pastor Harry