The coronavirus outbreak has led to public gatherings being canceled across the country, and church leaders are trying to figure out what to do. What information should you put in your pastoral letter to your congregation? Should you keep holding services? What does it mean for your church to love your neighbors well during this time?
To help you answer these questions, we have collected five letters showing how different pastors across the U.S. are leading their churches to respond to the challenges posed by the coronavirus.
Pastoral Letter from Al Pittman of Calvary Worship Center, Colorado Springs, Colorado
Beloved CWC Family,
With the ever-growing concern, world-wide and at home, regarding the coronavirus, I wanted to reach out to you and inform you of our response to this pandemic. First, let us remember the words of the Apostle Paul; (2 Timothy 1:7) For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. Secondly, let us exercise “wisdom.” (Proverbs 2:6) For the Lord gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding.
Many churches, sport’s venues, political campaigns, etc. are suspending events until further notice. Here at CWC we care deeply about your spiritual edification and your physical safety. After much thought and prayer, I do not believe, at this time, the Lord is directing us to suspend our services, or other scheduled events. Having said that, we are strongly urging everyone to be very cautious about their interactions with one another here at CWC, and to practice good hygiene (washing your hands, covering your mouth when you cough, etc.).
There are four steps we have taken in order to reduce the chance of anyone contracting the coronavirus here at CWC; (1) We have placed hand sanitizers at every entrance into the sanctuary at our westside location and our east campus (Creekside). Sanitizer wipes are also available at the Life Center (information center) at each location. (2) We are stepping up our efforts to make sure our children’s area is sanitized; and are discouraging parents to not bring their children to church, but to stay home if the child is sick.(3) We are also encouraging people during our “greeting time” to not shake hands but rather to simply acknowledge one another with a greeting (God bless you). (4) We will provide starting this weekend rubber surgical gloves for those who want to use them. These steps will not safeguard us against this virus 100% but will reduce the risk.
In addition, If you are sixty-years old and older, especially if you have a condition which makes you more susceptible to contracting a virus, you may want to consider the possibility of not attending services, for a couple of weeks. Reports reveal elderly individuals have a higher chance of contracting the virus. Having said that, I definitely plan on being at every service! If you decide to stay home, please join us online at cwccs.org for the 10am service. Online giving is also available. Your continual financial support during this crisis is very much appreciated.
Let me leave you with four things we can all do.
-Pray – for God to aid scientists in discovering a vaccine quickly. And for the witness of the church; that we will not allow the coronavirus to quarantine our faith
-Act responsibly. Wash your hands, etc.
-Respect the space of others
-Rest in God.
(Jeremiah 33:6) Behold, I will bring it health and healing; I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth.
For His Glory,