Pastor’s Perspective 05-12-2020
I learned a long time ago I am not going to have all the answers to the questions people ask me, but that it is helpful to be honest about what I do and don’t know. My six-year-old grandson asked me this past weekend if we grow in heaven. I know where the grow part came from. His parents are encouraging him to eat healthy foods and finish his meals so he can grow. How or why he connected that with heaven is still a mystery, since we were simply having lunch at the table. But I’m sure glad he sees heaven in his future!
In this season of uncertainty, as we anticipate opening things back up and getting back to some sense of new normalcy, many are asking when that will be and what it will look like. Fair questions. The truth is we don’t know yet… but we are discussing it at length. Even as we discuss this, I am aware that people are at opposite ends of the spectrum about coming back to church. Some are biting at the bit. Others – apparently a majority according to recent polls – are hesitant and remain cautious.
North Carolina just began Phase One last Friday. It still limits gatherings to ten people, including church services. In this phase, we will continue to offer everything online, including a single combined service at 11:00. This phase is projected to run into early June at least. Phase Two will increase the limit for gatherings to 50. That doesn’t do a whole lot for a church our size, but does give us more options to use more worship leaders (ensembles, etc.), especially to support our more traditional service. We will probably shift to two separate services sometime during Phase Two. Both online. Even during this phase, we will have extremely limited capacity for anyone else to assemble for worship. We will be well into summer before we will be able to start coming together for worship again. I don’t like it any more than you, but it is our reality for the short term future.
On the bright side, this coming Sunday our youth will lead the entire service. While I wish we could all be here to support them in person, I am sure we will be supporting them online and in other ways. I will share much more about our plans moving forward in coming weeks. Please join us for worship this Sunday! ~ John