Response to COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
Written 21 Mar 2020
What interesting times we live in!
The ongoing coronavirus crisis means that the government has advice for churches like us, intended to keep us healthy and safe. At the same time, the heart of our church is to do what Jesus would do in our shoes, showing grace, kindness, and generosity of spirit, especially to those in need in this hard time. The leadership team have come up with measures we hope will support our fellowship while being obedient to the authorities and considerate of everyone’s health. We really can remain in fellowship, without meeting face-to-face.
The church will not be gathering on Sunday mornings or evenings.
Morning worship, breaking of bread, Little Followers, the Bring and Share picnic, and Sunday at Six are all suspended.
Though this is saddening, we believe it’s the most responsible thing to do. Despite being a small congregation, it’s not fair to continue to gather with disregard for others, nor would it show a good witness. The advice from our network, Partnership, echoes that of the Evangelical Alliance, which is to suspend church gatherings right away.
If you have internet access, you can watch broadcast services from St Simons (www.stsimonsouthport.org.uk), Christ Church (www.christchurchsouthport.org.uk), and other local churches. We will investigate whether we can stream useful content online as well in the future.
Navigate to their websites (above) or YouTube channels to watch the broadcasts.
BBC Local Radio and Radio 4 will be broadcasting a church service from this Sunday (22nd March) at 8am, and there may be services on BBC One in the near future.
If you need extra help with basic needs, shopping, or would like a doorstep visit, please get in touch with someone from the church or via our Facebook page.
Unfortunately, food bank is suspended until further notice. If you are in real need of food, you can try to connect with local food banks run by the Trussel Trust, or leave a message on the church answerphone at 01704 227 755 and Gabriel will try to get back to you.
Coffee time is suspended until further notice. We hope to keep everyone in touch over the phone.
The Wednesday prayer and worship meeting is suspended until further notice. We can continue to support each other in prayer, and activity leaders will be in touch to formalise this idea.
House Groups and PALS
Some of us regularly meet together in homes. This will be suspended, and we encourage you to stop doing this too if you meet in this way. Consider picking a Christian book and discussing it through text messages or on the phone.
Hero Academy (Kids work)
Hero academy, the Thursday afternoon kids work, is suspended until further notice. We hope to start sending materials to parents so that they can continue to give kids Christian teaching while at home.
The upcoming Messy Church is cancelled. We hope to find another way of serving our usual delegates using technology and other means.
Alpha, CAP Money Course, and other outreach
Alpha and CAP Money Course are cancelled, and our outreach plans will be paused and adjusted for the situation.
Key points, in closing
- Don’t go to the church building - there are no services or activities.
- Check out the online and broadcast content from other churches.
- If you’re struggling and need help with shopping or would like a doorstep visit, please get in touch.
Whatever life throws at us, our eternal hope is in Jesus. A favourite bible verse is Phillipians 4:8, apt for this time:
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Continue to stand firm in Jesus and be there for one another. We have an opportunity to do church in a new way, and to show the world the light of life in a dark time.
God bless you all very much,
Ste, on behalf of the Elders and Leaders of Canning Road Evangelical Church.