I pray you are well. When the Covid-19 pandemic began, we had no idea how long it would last. It has now been eight weeks since we stopped having corporate gatherings. In many ways, I have seen God’s grace through the trial. We have reached tens of thousands of people that we would have never reached through social media and digital platforms. We have connected with leaders through technology. We have stretched our mentality about how church should and can be done. We have ministered to communities like the medical community in ways that we never have before. Through it all, God has added to our war chest many things that will never be lost. We will never be the same!
That said, 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 change day by day, and week by week. I have developed both long-term strategies and short-term strategies, depending on the way that our world responds to the effects of this virus.
I have prepared our teams to begin planning a May 31 return to church.
Several things I know:
I know there will be many questions, as well as praise and critiques. Just know that there is no truly perfect way to check everyone’s expectation box, but we are moving forward with the best wisdom and care we can.
One final thing: Because of the changing nature of this virus and the unpredictable demands, these are only tentative plans. There may be a scenario in which, as we get closer to the planned event, we no longer feel it is safe to move forward, and we reschedule the reopening.
Thank you so much for being the best church in the world, for supporting the leadership of our church, and for keeping us lifted up in prayer. We are here to serve you and Jesus to the best of our abilities.
We love you all very much,
Pastors Jonathan and Angie Stockstill