COVID-19 - Church Update #2

March 14, 2020
COVID-19 - Church Update #2

Hello Bridgeway Family,

As I mentioned in my first update, this is a fluid situation and likely to change day-to-day. Having gone back and forth on the idea of public gatherings, praying, and seeking info from a variety of people, including those in the health field and in the church, I think it the wisest decision to call off public worship for the time being. This will include Youth Group on Wednesday nights. When it comes to our students, we generally follow the school district plans and as you know, schools and sports in our county have closed for the next month. As far as small groups, we will leave that up to each group. If you would like to continue meeting, please do but also don’t feel that you HAVE to meet.

Here are my thoughts:

  1. The governor has asked that we limit gatherings over 250 and while we are not at that level of attendance, we still want to try and observe the "6 feet of separation" rule. I don't want us to do anything that would be misconstrued as subverting the wishes of the government if they don't expressly go against the Bible and while the Bible tells us "not to stop meeting together," it also contains rules for sick and infected people to distance themselves from the larger community.
  2. Our inability to shake hands and hug and to do communion, which are major reasons for gathering in person, lessen the impact of the public gathering
  3. I keep using the phrase "serve our community" and now realize that perhaps the best way we can do this is by helping to slow the spread of the virus. 
  4. There is no way at this point to know all who are infected. We owe it to those that might gather to provide a safe and clean environment and if we can't ensure that, then I'm leery of asking people to come. 

Here is our plan for this weekend:

  1. We will be recording the message for tomorrow and we will post it online at 10:00 am. 
  2. We will also post links for parents to have access to the kids/student lessons. 
  3. We will also encourage everyone to join the nation in prayer tomorrow as the President has suggested. 
  4. It will be important that we maintain our giving as we will continue to pay operational bills as well as ensure we can meet the needs of our community as they arise. 

We will meet at the beginning of the week as staff and reevaluate our plans moving forward. In my first update, I said that we do not have to operate in fear and I still believe that. We can rest in the knowledge that God is still on the throne and that he gives us a sound mind to make wise decisions. We believe this is the wisest decision at the time. 

Please let us know if there are ways we can serve your neighbors in the meantime. The church stands ready to serve our community in any way it needs. Pray with me that God will be glorified in this stressful time and that the church will show His glory in all our actions. Finally, love one another. Check on your neighbor and serve them as you can. 

“Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant, brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” – Hebrews 13:20, 21

In Christ,

Kenny Panduku

Lead Pastor
Bridgeway Community Church
w: 317.489.2948
m: 317.448.5610