Week 13 Update – June 4

SMBC Covid-19 Update
June 4, 2020
Two Sundays ago, we had a dry-run worship service with our First Impressions, Technology, and Worship Teams. They were further supported by a great number of our Deacons and our Church Staff. They underwent training that day and quickly grasped the precautions and policies under which we would open up for in-person worship services again. You can see those precautions and policies in the “SMBC Phase-1 Reopening: Policy Statement” which is located on our church website.
Last Sunday, May 31st, SMBC became one of the first churches of our size, in this area, to be ready and able to hold in-person worship services. This was made possible because of the tremendous job and the hard work of our team leaders, members, and staff. I CANNOT express adequately how thankful I am for all of these brothers and sisters and what they have done to get us back to the public worship of our Lord and King. Thank you for making it possible for us to gather around His throne!
We had 101 individuals attend the 4 worship services on this first Sunday back. This number does not include the 16 First Impressions/Deacon servers or the Tech and Worship Team members. Our teams were careful to guard their social distancing as they arrived, as they worshiped, and as they departed. It was weird because we couldn’t throw our arms around one another in fellowship or hold hands as we prayed. It was wonderful because the Lord received our corporate praise and we were able to break the Bread of Life together. It wasn’t a complete return to normal. It was a beginning.
As long as we can maintain safe precautions, even though the Covid-19 is still present, we can continue to worship in this way. We know that the Lord would not have us be reckless with the lives of His people and we are going to continue to take our responsibilities very seriously. Please understand and expect this level of care.
The healthy and whole Christian life consists of: regular gathering for Biblical teaching & preaching, true spiritual fellowship, prayer, worship, giving, and evangelism/missions (Acts 2:42-47). We know you need these things and we are doing our best to make them available. Even though we are now able to worship and hear the Word together, we still hunger for deep fellowship opportunities. Our evangelism and missions efforts have had to be re-envisioned as well for a time. And, these needs are especially felt by our children and youth.
I say all of that to say this, we have taken a major step but we aren’t there yet. Please continue to pray to the Lord for the world’s deliverance from this virus. Come back to in-person worship if it is prudent for you to do so. If you are compromised in your health at all, I beg you please to wait. We can almost see the end of this. Stay strong. Be patient. You are too important to lose.
We will continue to have the 4 worship services at this time. We will also continue our high-quality online broadcast of the services (8:00 and 11:00) and Sunday School (9:30). Some Sunday School classes continue to meet on Zoom. If you would like to join one of those groups, please contact the church and we will help you get connected.
Our church is a very special family of faith and the love we share in Christ is real and readily available to others. I am so thankful for who you all are in Him. God bless you this week!
Pastor John

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