March 17, 2020

 

Dear Church Family,

 

I am writing this letter with a heavy heart…not because of the chaos that has been caused by the coronavirus pandemic that we are all trying to navigate right now…but because today we lost a dear sister. Wendy Suter went home to be with the Lord this morning after being involved in a fatal car accident. I spent the morning with Mike and the Suter family as we are all trying to make sense of this. It is a reminder to us of the frailty of our human condition and the reality that our only hope lies in the fact that God has a plan for our lives that extends beyond the short span of our years here on earth.

 

Please be in prayer for Mike, Eric, Heather and the rest of the Suter family as they grieve their loss. We will keep you updated about the memorial service as information becomes available.

 

As followers of Christ, we are a family of faith and hope. It was good to worship with many of you this past Sunday. Again, for those who stayed home and worshiped with us via livestream, I am thankful that you are safe and that we have this capability now to worship together even if we are apart physically.

 

As I mentioned before, our Elders have been evaluating the situation seriously and trying to make wise decisions, albeit difficult ones, for the safety of our congregation. We met last Sunday morning. Our plan was to take things a day at a time and respond to each new update from our government leaders accordingly.

 

By Sunday afternoon Gov. Mike DeWine announced the closing of restaurants, and later that evening the CDC announced restrictions on crowds of over 50. At that point, our Elders felt it best to cancel our midweek meetings (AWANA, Lifeline, and adult Bible study and prayer) and follow the current schedule of school closings. Therefore, all midweek services have been canceled for March 18, 25, and April 1.

 

Yesterday, President Donald Trump announced further restrictions on gatherings of 10 or more for a 15-day period. After much prayer and consideration, our Elders have decided that Sunday services will be canceled for March 22 and 29, in keeping with the intended purpose of our nation’s leaders, which is to restrict the risk and spread of the virus. Again, this is not a decision taken lightly.

 

Keep in mind, we will still be having a worship service that will be available on Facebook live and Boxcast. We are looking for additional alternatives as well. I will be sending out further notice in a couple of days with an action plan as to what we can do as a church in this time of national crisis. Not being able to hold public services as this time is an inconvenience, but it does not alter our mission and purpose as a community of faith.

 

Life is dear and life is short. As a family, we want to do everything that we can to keep each other safe. We deal with the reality of loss all the time. It’s painful. We mourn with one another. At this time, we don’t want to exacerbate the severity of this situation be being unwise. Let’s pray for a swift end to this season and a quick return to our fellowship. Thank you, and God bless.

 

In His service,

 

Pastor Glenn