Weekly Update - April 23
UPDATE ON SUNDAYS
We continue to provide weekly suggestions for in-home worship and the sermon by video and we plan to continue this approach the foreseeable future. We also recognize that the volume is increasing in our world about what and when re-entry to normal and in-person gatherings will look like. Our staff and elders are actively discussing and making plans for the day when we will all gather together in worship again.
As of today, our local authorities maintain a shelter-in-place order through May 15. The wisdom of Romans 13 calls us to continue to support and honor these authorities and the orders that have been issued. They have been ordained by God for our good. The restrictions are not applied to the church alone, but to the whole of our society. We want our testimony to match the Scripture’s call. It is possible that gatherings will be allowed to resume by degree (i.e., groups of 50, 100, 250). We will plan to move as slowly or quickly as our local authorities allow. Even with that, we are actively preparing for what smaller gatherings and our eventual regular church gathering will look like when they can begin again.
One of the greatest encouragements I have had through this period is to see how well people are caring for one another. A primary manner people have been connecting is through our Growth Groups. Each week, our staff reviews reports from our Group leaders about our various virtual meetings. Prayer, reflection on the application of God’s word, and tangible ministry to others is happening across our congregation through our groups in wonderful ways.
We recognize that some of our members are not yet connected to a Growth Group. Let me take this opportunity to encourage you to connect with one – and we would like to help with that. If you are not formally connected to a group, but would like to join one, please email me or Dawson Bryant and we will look to connect you as soon as possible to a group. You will benefit from the conversation, prayer, and ministry that takes place.
Today, our members Daniel and Courtney Martin were able to finalize adoption of their daughter, Alexandra. While meeting through a virtual courthouse, Alexandra has become a Martin. We are thrilled, especially in such unique days, this expression of God’s grace has been realized. Many of you have been praying for the Martins. Express to God your praise and to them your excitement.
One of our members and interns, Daniel Pentimone recently availed himself to the need for nurses in New York City. He was assigned, for 21 days, to a hospital in Brooklyn and has worked not only in the emergency room, but in ICU as well. Be sure to watch the video update above for a quick note of thanks and update from Daniel. Continue to pray for him. He is doing well and has remained healthy. In fact, he has agreed to serve for another 14 days beyond his original commitment. We are thankful for his heart to invest himself, his skills and training at this providential time of his life, during these providential days. Continue to pray for him and his ministry to others.