Coronavirus

The latest update on Covid-19

5/15/2020

Re-Opening Plans: Click here to view the re-opening plans.

 

Greetings EBMC Family,

I wanted to take a moment to update you on our response to all that is happening in our world.  We are living in uncharted waters, which in reality, every day is uncharted waters.  So at the bottom of it all, we should be living today as we should be living every day…by faith.  Having said that, in many respects these are days like none of us have ever faced in our world.  Because of this, we are all trying to find a way to manage without a handbook on how to respond to pandemics.

As your pastor, I wanted to share with you what we are planning to do.  In light of government officials and health professionals’ recommendations, the board and I have made the decision to suspend services for this week. We will reevaluate next week and update you on our plans.  It is very likely that we will not have services next week either, but at the present moment we are keeping the situation fluid.  Let me give you several reasons for this:

  1. Scripture commands us to listen to the governing authorities over us, as long as it is not unbiblical. (Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to you for good.)  Please keep in mind the government is not forcing churches to close, if they would then we have the biblical mandate to obey God rather than man.
  2. Scripture calls us to love one another.  If we love our neighbor as ourselves, then we need to think about their wellbeing as much as we look after ours.  It could also appear to our community that we don’t care about helping to prevent the spread of the virus.

In light of all this, we are taking some measures to help and minister during this time.  Here are some things we are doing, or plan to do, during this time:

  1. Online services with a study guide for small group gatherings Sunday night.  While we may be discouraged to get together in large groups, nothing prohibits us from meeting in smaller groups for fellowship and mutual edification. Or, this is a great time to encourage our fathers to lead their families in worship.
  2. We are opening our parking lot for the local school system to use as a bus stop for school sack lunches. (Not sure if it will work, but we’re working on it and making it available.)
  3. Allow people who need a quiet place to work remotely to use our classrooms and internet.
  4. We have created a task force to run errands and pickups for the seniors in our church.
  5. We are also partnering with a local soup kitchen that is closing temporarily. We will be providing sack lunches to those in need while they are closed.

Let me remind us today what I preached on Sunday, God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind.  Instead of looking at this in a negative light, maybe this is one-way God would like to open our eyes to the fact that the church was not intended to just be a building, but about people being built up in the most holy faith.  May this be a time that as Christians we find God to be more present with us than ever, and our faith established to new depths like never before.

We will continue to update you as a church family as we move through this time.  May God’s sustaining grace keep us through this time, and allow our lights to shine brighter than ever before!

In His service,
Jonathan Slagenweit