Changes Due to Coronavirus
Hello Church family,
May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace. The Coronavirus has created a global panic that we've not seen in our lifetime. Our government has issued great precaution over this past week. As a result, schools have closed as well as many other enterprises. Our day to day lives have changed. As of Monday, our government authorities have requested that gatherings greater than 10 people be avoided which puts us in uncharted waters.
In the midst of this crisis, we, the leadership of Cornerstone, must make the decisions that are best for our local church. In making these decisions, we have asked ourselves these two questions: 1) how do we best honor God, His Word and will? 2) how do we best serve our church family?
As your Senior Pastor, I have had to make many careful decisions. But this is most difficult. Difficult because, in the middle of our crisis, the local church should stand strong in faith, providing many things including stability, instruction, encouragement and life. Currently our country is in panic, fear and hysteria so what do we do? Answer, be the church. Our response to this fear should be different. Church, we have this amazing opportunity to really understand what it means to be the Church, because the Church is not the building, it’s the people. While fellowship and gathering for worship is of great importance and Biblical, during this unprecedented time we can still be the church without meeting in a physical location. We can still be stable, give instruction, encourage one another and propagate life in Jesus’ name. Not only can we do this, we get to do this! The will of God will still be accomplished and we will still be able to serve one another greatly, our methods are just going to change as we navigate the coming week(s). We need to reflect the peace and light of Christ while the world is reacting in fear, this is an opportunity like we’ve never seen before to show what being a Christ follower looks like.
I believe we take this one week at a time, and beginning today we will live stream Bible Studies and Corporate Worship. We are not canceling services, we are moving onto an online platform. As for activities at our facility, for now they are suspended. We do not do this in fear but in faith. Faith that God will continue to meet our needs as well as the needs of those around us! Faith that we can still be the Church and be greatly effective! Faith in obeying the civil authorities God instructs us to in Romans 13! The Gospel will prevail as we operate as the Church!
Prayerfully and in unity, we have decided the following actions be taken on a week by week basis (some of the following have already been alluded to):
1. Venue Change: Our local church will provide weekly Bible Studies and Worship Services. These will be streamed live on Facebook and our website (iamcbc.org).
- Sunday mornings will stream live at 10:45 am.
- Wednesday night Bible Study will be online at 7:00 pm.
- Sunday School and Children’s Church will be suspended. Jennifer Nelson will have videos, Bible lessons, simple craft ideas, and other activity suggestions available online.
- Youth Services on Wednesday and Sunday will move to an online presence as well. Charlie Crider is currently working on this aspect.
- All other gatherings and events held at the church building are, for now, suspended.
- BASE group will continue in an online format. Pastor John is working on this currently. This is a great opportunity for the church to truly build extreme relationships and be of service to one another!
2. We exhort you brothers and sisters to engage with other people in this time of uncertainty. We are the church at all times, not only when we gather. We are the salt of the earth; when we operate like this, our faith will champion our fear resulting in others being encouraged. Especially on social media, let's flood it with the light of Christ and not of panic.
3. Help provide for the needs of others physically and emotionally. We are putting together care teams this week. First, teams to deliver groceries and other essentials. Secondly, teams to pray and encourage by phone or visit. This is a great opportunity to serve. Let us know if you want to be a part of the help!
4. Tithes and offerings: Ministry still continues and so does our faith and obedience. You can drop off your tithe and offering at the church building during office hours or you can give online @ iamcbc.org, or by using the tithe.ly App. If you need help, please contact the office at 940-627-3751, your BASE Group leader, or you can call me (Pastor Ron) at 940-210-9519.
We love each of you very much, we are concerned for each persons physical, emotional and spiritual welfare. We prayerfully believe the best way we can serve you NOW, is by implementing this plan of action. We care greatly for each and every one of you and want to do our part to keep you safe and curve the spread of this virus. Therefore, we will leverage the technology God has provided for us in our new facility to continue to meet as the Church. Let us all choose unity for the sake of the Gospel.
Serving Christ together,
Pastor Ron Fox