Dear church family,
First, a bit of news about this Sunday – It will be communion Sunday! We are so looking forward to sharing in the Lord’s table together. It is an remembrance of what the Lord has done for us, a living and visual proclamation of the Gospel, and a manifestation of the unity of the body of Christ. We want as many of us as possible to be able to participate in as safe a manner as possible, so here’s the plan: First of all, for those who are not comfortable with our regular inside services but would come to something outside, at 8:30 a.m. we will have an abbreviated service in the back parking lot. It will be a simple service, with just a couple of hymns, a Scripture and prayer, and communion. Most will remain standing for the 20 minutes this will take, but if you’d like to bring a lawn chair, you are welcome to do so. Participants in this service are still encouraged to tune into the 11 a.m. service online to hear the sermon.
Then, at 9 and 11 we will have our regular inside services in the MPR, including communion. For all of these services, the communion elements will be set out on a table in pre-packaged 2-in-1 cups, which you should pick up on your way to the service.
To help us prepare well, please sign-up now (click here) for one of these services. The sign-ups are not intended to limited the number of people in attendance, but rather to plan well and help us keep balance between the services. Alternatively, if you would like one of the pastors to come to your small group and share communion with you there, please let us know. And please be in prayer for hearts prepared to worship the Lord and remember the cross.
Second, just a reminder to look for our weekly video blogs on the church’s Facebook page. A couple weeks ago I shared and last week Pastor Cameron did. This week Pastor Mitchell is starting a short series on Jesus’ promises to us in the Upper Room Discourse, and how these are a comfort and challenge to us today. That should be up by this evening.
Third, our Elders are working their way through the calling lists. Some send an email or Facebook message first, and these don’t always go into your primary inbox. So please pay attention to your spam folder or your FB Messenger requests. It’s been a rather complicated thing to divvy up the names of our surprisingly large church family, but if you don’t get a call within the next few weeks, please reach out.
Finally, a word about masks during church ministries. We fully recognize that brothers and sisters in our church family are on opposite ends of the scale in their views, and that many are somewhere in the middle. We also understand that we are under no legal compulsion to wear masks. Our decisions in this regard have been motivated by what we prayerfully believe is simply the best thing to do for the whole family. Even among the pastors and Elders there are significantly differing opinions on these matters, but the Holy Spirit has enabled us to reach consensus, for which we are grateful to Him. That shows that He is at work! And so, when it comes to masks during the worship service, we ask that everyone attending follow the decision of the body. One translation of Romans 12:10 urges us to “outdo one another in showing honor.“ Showing deference is a great Biblical concept. First, what it doesn’t mean: It doesn’t mean you don’t have a strong opinion or well-researched conclusion. It also doesn’t mean you’re wrong in whatever your opinion or conclusion may be. It does mean that we realize that brotherly love, mutual encouragement, and the unity of the body is more important than a personal position, no matter how strongly held, on any matter that is not central to the character of God and salvation in Christ. And in taking such a position, we are specifically instructed (Rom 15) that those who are strong (or feel free in these secondary matters) show deference to those who are weak (or feel constrained in these matters). So that’s what we’re doing, and we so very much appreciate the church family doing this together.
Please feel free to talk with me, or any of our pastors or Elders, on these matters.
Grateful for you,