Responding to the Covid-19 Crisis
Dear Harvest Community Church,
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble (Psalm 46:1). This is crucial to remember as the Coronavirus outbreak is unfolding. We want to encourage everyone, that we need to choose peace over panic.
As we witness the current events regarding this outbreak, we as a church are responding in the abundance of caution rather than reacting in the abundance of fear. We believe in and worship a God who is mighty and sovereign over all things including viruses, disease and death. Cultivating a Godward perspective is what will ground our hope and inform our wisdom and response. This is not the first of its kind, nor will it be the last (H1N1/swine flu, Avian flu, Ebola, MERS, SARS…) until Christ returns and restores all things.
In seeking to be wise and discerning as circumstances change daily -
Here is our current plan:
Times like this draw our attention to the brevity and fragility of life (James 4:14). It reminds us of our weakness and need for a Savior (2 Corinthians 12:9). Therefore, with these truths reigning in our hearts, we pray to the Father in heaven for ourselves, each other and the world.
Pray for: wisdom, healing, treatment/cure/vaccine, safety, provisions and the final cry of our hearts is, “Come, Lord Jesus. Come!”
After monitoring the latest news and updates from local authorities and the CDC and much prayer, we are choosing to love our neighbor by cancelling our Sunday gatherings for this Sunday, March 15 2020.
By cancelling, we are joining the local authorities and institutions in limiting large group gatherings in an effort to diminish the growth and spread of COVID-19. We want to do everything possible to be responsible, wise and loving to our community and we are convinced that cancelling the gatherings falls in step with this desire. While the gathering of the body of Christ is vital for the church community, we also desire to care well for one another and our community.
As we continue to monitor the progress of the Covid-19 virus, we will keep the Harvest family updated on our plans moving forward.
If the situation surrounding the virus continues to escalate, we will evaluate future gatherings and be looking for new opportunities to serve our people and city.
To be clear, we are not panicked and these decisions have not arisen out of fear, but out of love for our neighbor.
We will likely be having some kind of virtual gathering on Sunday morning at 10:00 am. Check our: Facebook https://www.facebook.com/harvestchurchselah/ Instagram https://www.instagram.com/harvestchurchselah and on our website
https://www.harvestcommunitychurch.com for details to be posted soon.
Public health experts say people who are at higher risk of illness including (1) those over 60, (2) anyone who has underlying health conditions, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, chronic liver disease, blood disorders, (3) those with weakened immune systems or (4) pregnant should remain at home as much as possible. For more information these websites are helpful: https://www.cdc.gov/…/specific…/high-risk-complications.html
For those who are recommended to stay home, there is an opportunity for others in the church to care for them by running errands, shopping, etc. If you are willing to help out with this or if you are someone who needs help, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.orgILLNESS:
If you, or a family member, has a cough, fever, or other respiratory difficulties, we ask you to stay home and do not attend any church-related activities such as Sunday gatherings or LifeGroup events until you are fever-free for 24 hrs.
If you have any questions, or if you are diagnosed with the virus, please email us at email@example.com. Our desire is to love, care and pray for our church body and we will make every effort to extend care and help you should you become ill.
As we move forward, our goal is to love God and love our neighbor. These two will inform our decisions and direct our path as a church.
We grieve with those who have lost loved ones. We pray for those who are sick and we pray for those who face other difficulties due to this pandemic such as not being able to go to work, take care of older family members or who have been or will be financially affected by the restrictions due to this outbreak. The power of sin and darkness in this world is daunting and wearisome, but we do not lose heart because, “this light and momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18). We put all of our trust in him and pray that he would be pleased to use us as a church and individually to be salt and light to this world full of darkness. May he show his power and might and bring many souls to himself even through this difficult time. To him be the glory, forever and ever, Amen.
You ARE Loved,
Pastor Jason & the Elder team