Dear Church Family,
Update (21st March)
Sunday meetings have now been cancelled for the foreseeable future until the government advises it is safe to reopen.
We will be livestreaming a service each Sunday at 11am to our Facebook group. If you would like to view, please request to join the following group:
As you may be aware the government is giving daily updates on the situation with the coronavirus and guidelines as to how the general public is to respond so look out for that in the coming days.
The guidelines yesterday were that anyone: over the age of 70, or ‘at risk’ group (with medical conditions), or pregnant, should self-isolate in the current climate. Therefore, if you are within any of those categories, for your own safety and the safety of others we would encourage you to follow the government guidelines and therefore avoid coming to church on Sundays for the foreseeable future.
As to how the current situation affects our church activities and regular worship, we met as elders & deacons last night and made the following decisions:
- We will carry on meeting on Sunday mornings until the government tells us otherwise. See below for details of live streaming.
- We have suspended all Sunday school classes. However, the Crèche will be open for those with really young ones.
- We have also decided to suspend Kids Club and Crossroads on Fridays for the time being.
- We also decided to cancel the evening services and communion for the time being.
- With regards to house groups, the one on Thursdays at the manse and the one that meets in Philip Jordan’s house on Tuesday evenings are both suspended for the time being, however, Mark Stevens’ house group will continue to meet for now so if you would like to join them please get in touch with Mark Stevens.
- Given that in the coming weeks the situation is likely to get worse than better, we have also decided to cancel our Quarterly Church Meeting towards the end of April, but will notify you if anything changes.
We realize to some of you the above actions may seem extreme, however, we want to obey our government as much as possible but we also want to make every effort to help and support one another in the current climate.
Therefore, in addition to the above decisions, we are also:
- Planning to live stream our Sunday morning services, likely through our Facebook page, the link below:
- Hoping to provide teaching and study materials for you every week in order to encourage you to keep close to God and His word. So we will encourage you to make most of these and possibly even take the opportunity to study God’s word with members of your family.
- Encouraging you to keep in touch with each other, members or not, and be a source of help, comfort and encouragement to each other in this difficult time. It is in times like this our faith in Jesus, and our love for Him and each other is tested. So let us take this opportunity to love one another as Christ loved us and gave Himself for us.
- Urging you to let the elders or deacons know if you are self-isolating or have tested positive for the virus so that we are aware of your situation and can take necessary precaution with regards to others within the congregation but also so that we can do all we can to support, help and comfort you.
- Making an appeal regarding giving to the fellowship fund in order to enable us as elders and deacons to help and support others in our church family who will be financially affected in the current climate. There are quite a few brothers and sisters who are currently on zero-hours contract and therefore it is likely for them to lose any source of income at this time. Therefore, as we have been learning through the book of Acts it is our responsibility to provide for our brothers and sisters in Christ, because the King of Heaven gave All He had for us when He gave His life for us. The best way to do this is to give to the general fund but specify that it is a fellowship fund gift. And if you do not have the general fund bank details please let one of the elders know.
- Asking you to please let one of us elders or deacons know if you are struggling at this time, whether it be financially, spiritually, emotionally or mentally. Our Lord encourages us in Galatians 6:2 to “Bear one another’s burden and in doing so fulfill the law of Christ”. So by letting us know your need, whatever it may be, not only are we able to share the love of Christ with you, but you are also enabling us to serve Jesus and please him. So PLEASE let one of us elders or deacons know if you are in need and we will do our best to either help you ourselves or coordinate with others to serve you.
As it was said last Sunday morning, these are difficult days we are living in, and although perhaps the worst thing about it is that we do not know what the future holds, as people of the living God we can take comfort in the fact that we do nevertheless know who holds the future, and that is our heavenly Abba Father, who has promised to be with us and to never leave nor forsake us.
So dear brother, dear sister, do not lose hope, but trust in our Abba Father, trust that you are precious in His sight, trust that he is in control, and trust that no matter what happens, because of the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, there is an inheritance waiting for us in heaven, an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade because our God is guarding our inheritance with his own power. And what is more is that He has also promised to preserve us for our home as well. So rejoice in these truths, and meanwhile as the genuineness of our faith is being tested, let us persevere and continue to trust and hold fast to our God so that Jesus our Lord may be praised and honored. (1 Peter 1:3-7)
In Christ & for His glory,
Ashkan, Philip & Mark
In case you need to get in touch, our numbers are:
Mark Stevens 07703532886
Philip Jordan 01923 441201