The past few weeks have proven to be a time of great anxiety for our nation. The headlines remind us daily of the brokenness in the world around us. Jesus reminds us in John 16:33 “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have trouble but take courage; I have overcome the world.”
This past weekend, we made the decision to meet for worship and Bible study on our normal schedule. I appreciate all the positive feedback and support we received for that decision. In my note to you on Friday, we mentioned that we may find it necessary to take a different approach in the future. While we may feel like the media coverage is overblown, there are still a great many of our congregation who would be at great risk if exposed to the virus.
With that in mind and following consultation with our Deacons and members of the medical community, we have decided to hold our Sunday worship services in an online only format. We will not meet on campus for either worship or Bible study. This includes all our Sunday and weekday groups.
We recognize that this does create a hardship on some of our older members especially, who may not have access to the technology required for streaming our services. With that, we are hopeful that small groups of NSBC members will gather for worship in homes and invite some of our senior adults to join them. Our services will be broadcast online during our normal time slots at 9:30am and 11:00am, and on 88.5 QXFM at 11:00am, and on the radio at 88.5 QXFM at 11:00am.
The services will be available on demand after they stream live, but we encourage you to be intentional and schedule this time just as you would on a Sunday morning. You can find these services on Facebook, the NSBC Church App, YouTube Live, and on the Watch Live page on our website.
This is a week to week decision for us. Right now, this would seem to be a two to three-week horizon, however it could extend beyond that. On the other hand, if we’re cleared to meet then we will resume on campus activities immediately.
Family Ministry Opportunity
While it is easy to focus on what we are not doing this Sunday, we also feel that this is a great opportunity for our church to be a light to the world in all this uncertainty. As a staff we’re thinking about ways in which a slower pace of life can enhance our ministry to families. We’ve spent the last ten years teaching parents about their role as the primary faith trainer for their children. In that teaching, we learned how the church is a partner in their ministry to their kids. In our current environment with more time at home and fewer distractions, families have more opportunities than ever to grow closer in Christ and in relationship with each other.
Beginning on Monday, our Preschool, Children, PreTeen, Middle School and High School ministries will be communicating with you directly with ministry ideas, Bible lessons, and activities that you can do as a family. These will be based on content provided by D6, one of our Family Ministry partners. Below we have provided links to each of these ministry Facebook pages, as well as the D6 app for smartphones and tablets. These Facebook pages will serve as our distribution channel for ministry content and will provide you a single point of contact for each age group.
Be the Church
We understand that not everyone will be happy with this decision, but we appreciate the grace extended to us as we seek to chart a course during these uncertain times. It is good to be reminded that the church is not a building. We ARE the church, and it is in times like these that we are called upon to be the church to our friends and neighbors.
Our plan is to keep the office open during our normal operating hours. However, some of our staff with children at home may need to be out of the office at different times to care for their families. If you have a need, feel free to give us a call or email any of our staff. We will do our best to respond appropriately to your need quickly.
Thank you for your time today, and we will see you online on Sunday!
NSBC COVID-19 Q&A
CDC COVID-19 Website
Talking to Children about COVID-19
NSBC Ministry Links:
NSBC Mobile App
NSBC Youtube Live
NS Kids Facebook
HSM / MSM Facebook Group
North Side Women Facebook
D6 Family App – Apple iOS App Store
D6 Family App – GooglePlay