Dear Grassroots Church Community,
Christians have gathered for centuries always trying to practice four kinds of acts of communal worship (see Acts 2–4):
- meeting for prayer,
- devoting themselves to the apostles’s teachings,
- breaking bread in one another’s homes, and
- meeting every need.
During normal times, gathering for Sunday morning music, prayer, and a sermon is our preferred way of doing church. But it is not the only way. There are many ways to do church.
Because our city and province is entering containment mode, and to make the most of this opportunity to strengthen our extra-Sunday morning worship, we are entering a temporary season of life, where we may need to re-imagine church—a season that will strengthen any church who will take up this challenge. There are so many ways to encourage one another, build up faith, be formed into selfless lovers, and worship God together. Roughly half of our community already gathers in mid-week home group settings; we are already experienced in mid-week church.
So starting this week, temporarily, and for the foreseeable future, we are going to re-imagine church.
We will not be meeting on Sunday mornings until the pandemic has passed.
Technology will be our servant.
- Postponing Sundays: we are postponing larger group gatherings until further notice: e.g. Sunday mornings, university dinners.
- Sermon: Pastor Keith will deliver a message of encouragement and pastoral care to be posted on our web site Sunday mornings.
- Small Groups: we are going to work closely with small group leaders to help them imagine how they might continue on with their groups through technology, including leadership meetings, youth group, and home groups.
- Online Prayer: for those who are not in a home group, we are going to explore providing 1-hour mid-week prayer meetings, mediated by technology
- Discipleship at Home: we are also planning on providing resources on discipleship at home, especially for parents who will be home with their children for the next few weeks.
Very few people alive today have led through a pandemic, and nobody has had the chance to explore church in the way we are about to, given the blessings of technology. Hopefully this will be very temporary.
In the meantime, this will take so much prayer and a huge amount of grace. Luckily that is our bread and butter.
I know many of you may be feeling anxious in this time, and there are a lot of practical details to work out. But we are going to do it, and I think we are going to soar.
God gave me this scripture today to share with you:
“The salvation of the righteous comes from the LORD; he is their stronghold in times of trouble. The LORD helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in him.” Psalm 37.39-40
I pray that you may come to know God as your refuge in these times in such a greater way and that He would watch over us and deliver us.
Please do not hesitate to email at email@example.com if you have any questions or concerns. I will write you again soon with more details and instructions, as staff and leadership develop these plans.
For now, stay tuned to our website Sunday morning for a message from myself, at the very least.
With love, in Christ,