May 13, 2020
Dear Church Family,
When the COVID-19 pandemic began, we had no idea how long it would last. It has now been 9 weeks since we stopped having corporate gatherings. In many ways, I have seen God’s grace through this unusual season. We have reached thousands of people through social media and digital platforms. Our leaders have stayed connected through technology. This season has stretched our mentality about how church should and could be done. Generous individuals gave above and beyond so we could provide food for seniors and people in need. I have seen a church family rise up to keep my family and our staff encouraged through cards, texts messages, e-mails, and phone calls. Your prayers have kept us strong to serve. Through it all, God has added to our war chest many things that will never be lost. We will never be the same!
Many are asking what church life will look like on the other side of this crisis. When will we gather again, what precautions will we take, will it feel normal? Trust me, every leader in the Christian world is asking the same questions, and the answers seem to be changing day-by-day, and week-by-week. I have developed both long-term and short-term strategies, depending on the way that our world responds to the effects of the virus.
As of today, our team is preparing to return to a corporate worship on May 31. As we step into this new season in this journey, there are several things I know:
Not everyone will feel comfortable coming to church, and that is okay. We will still have our online services available as we have through this entire pandemic.
We will take EVERY precaution with sanitization. Our priority is that the worship gathering will be safe, sanitized, and spiritually significant.
We will do our best to follow social distancing protocols. This means that you may not be able to sit in your normal pew.
Our medical team will be taking temperatures upon entry into the building.
We recommend that you wear masks and gloves to the service, though it will not be required.
This service will be family friendly. Families will sit together in the sanctuary. There will be no Kid’s Church, Sunday School or nursery available.
Thank you for your faithfulness in supporting the work of the church through your tithes and offerings, especially during this season. Thank you for making your church strong! Thank you for helping us serve our city! You are the hands and feet of Jesus in Monroe. It shows that you are for bringing life-transformation to Monroe and beyond!
Join me in prayer for our first service back. I pray God does substantial work in our lives together. We were made for this!
Pastor Keith S. Hawes