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3.13.20 Update on Sunday Worship and Letter from Pastor Chris

Updated: Mar 26, 2020

Dear Church Family, 

Yesterday, we received notice that due to growing concerns around the coronavirus Congregation Beth Elohim is closing all programs, meetings, and gatherings from March 14 - March 28th. This means we will not hold public worship services for at least this Sunday, March 15th and most likely March 22nd. In light of the recommendations of city officials, we believe this is a wise decision as we continue to navigate the complexity of our time with the call to love God and love our neighbor.  We face a unique challenge and opportunity to take up our call together to root ourselves in Jesus Christ and bear the fruit of his life for the sake of the world. And my hope for us is that even if we cannot be together in person we can be together in a variety of ways, being the church family for one another.  1. Together in practice. We can use guided liturgies for our homes, we can pray the same prayers and read the same Scriptures, even sing the same songs so that even though we are physically apart we are joining together with our spiritual practices. In all things, even when separated we want to root ourselves in Jesus and experience his power and presence in our lives. I will be providing material this Sunday and for the days and weeks ahead for us to use together.  2. Together in parish. During this time we will ask our life groups (set up regionally by neighborhood/parish) to check in on one another. Even if you are not currently attending a life group we will make sure you are incorporated into one so that if you have specific needs or prayer requests you can share those with those closest to you. As soon as it seems prudent we will encourage small gatherings for worship. In the meantime, we are working to roll out our realm app which would allow life groups to communicate easily and allow folks to stay connected.  3. Together in presence for our neighbors. In the midst of uncertainty, we carry with us the promise and certainty of the power of God and the hope of the gospel. By checking in on our neighbors, especially those who are most vulnerable to this pandemic, we can offer the presence of God because He is with us by the power of His Spirit.  4. Together in provision. We want to care for one another, especially those who will be most immediately affected financially by loss of job or steady income. Our Mercy Team in coordination with our Life Groups will be the place to let your needs or the needs of others be known. Because God is generous to us we will continue to cultivate generosity even in a time of scarcity in order to meet the tangible financial and physical needs of one another.  I am so grateful for all of you, and as we enter into this time of uncertainty I look forward to the ways God will work in us and through us.  Remember in all things Jesus Christ is our life and He is our hope.  More to come. Grace and peace,  Chris

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