What does it look like for us to “show hospitality to one another without grumbling” (1 Peter 4:9, ESV) in the middle of a pandemic? Rosaria Butterfield, author of The Gospel Comes With a House Key (available in our church library) explores this important question in this excellent article:
Christians know that the dread of death can only be met by the redemption in Jesus Christ, so we need to proclaim Christ into a COVID-19 world.
*Updated June 17, 2020.
Dear EBC family,
We’re looking forward to gathering in person again on Sunday. We’ve been allowed to resume services with up to 30% of our seating capacity in each space (with two metres in between family units), and so are able to have one gathering at 10:30am, with groups meeting in both the Sanctuary and the Fellowship Hall. (A live video feed will be displayed on a screen in the Fellowship Hall.)
We’re anticipating this will allow everyone who wants to be here to come, although we will still be live-streaming the service for those who are not comfortable or able to be in attendance. You no longer need to pre-register for a service time. At this point we have more than enough space for all who want to attend, including visitors.
Here are some important guidelines to be aware of. Many of these have been updated this week, so please familiarize yourself with them:
- Please make yourself familiar with the official guidelines at this link.
- Those who are “medically vulnerable are strongly encouraged to delay their return to services and continue to participate in services online, where possible.” Furthermore, we ask that you stay home if you are sick or have any symptoms associated with COVID-19.
- “All physical contact, such as handshaking or passing objects between individuals, is not permitted.” We also ask that physical distancing be maintained between household units.
- Masks must be worn if and when you are singing. (You do not need to wear a mask if you will not be singing.) Please bring your own mask if possible. We will have some available for those unable to supply their own.
- You can choose which room to sit in (Sanctuary or Fellowship Hall), although the ushers may give direction depending on how the rooms fills up.
- We ask that preference for the Sanctuary be given to those with vision or hearing difficulties, or mothers who may need access to the nursery.
- If you are sitting in the Fellowship Hall, please use the Fellowship Hall entrance along the side of the building.
- On Sunday, you’ll find that the chairs have been arranged in rows which have been spaced 6’ apart. Within each row, the chairs themselves have been spaced a few inches apart from each other, so that if we leave three empty chairs in between family units we will be maintaining proper social distancing.
- Please do not move chairs around, as the proper spacing is important.
- We also ask that, in general, you remain seated once you have taken your seat.
Other Changes and Adaptations
- Per the province’s guidelines, we will not be passing a mic around for prayer & share time. Prayer requests will continue to be submitted via text message.
- Boxes have been installed in both rooms for you to deposit your offering. We also encourage you to become familiar with our new online giving system, which allows giving via text message. Click here for more info.
- Childcare will not be available, and both the childcare and the play rooms will be closed at all times. The nursery will be available for mothers with infants, but all toys have been removed.
- Weather-permitting, we will move outside after the service for our time of conversation and fellowship. This will allow us to see people from both rooms, maintain proper distancing, and further protect against the potential spread of COVID-19.
Let’s praise the Lord for this big step in the right direction, and ask Him to protect and guide us in these times even as we ask Him to hasten the day when we’re able to be fully back to normal again.
While we wait, let’s determine to walk by faith, not by fear. The King of kings is working all things for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). Let’s keep our eyes fixed on Him and seek to love one another and bring Him glory in this season!
On behalf of the board,
Download our COVID-19 Prayer Guide:
We invite you to watch or listen to our three-part sermon series, “Promises in the Pandemic.”
Who God has been for us in the past is the guarantee of who He will be for us in the future.
God has promised to provide everything we need to be content. Will we believe that He will keep His promise? And will we be content when He does?
What do the events of the first Easter Sunday have to say about our status today?
I’ve been pondering how we, as Christians, should be thinking about and responding to what is now officially a COVID-19 pandemic. This article says many of the things I would want to say, and so I commend it to you as a biblical guide to help us process these matters.
Self-isolation; pandemic; super spreader; coronavirus; COVID-19. Just a few of the words that have become
Relationships with other Christians should go past the surface. They should be deep and meaningful. But that’s easier said than done, isn’t it?
How do we engage our brothers and sisters in more meaningful conversation? How can we do this even in the hustle and bustle of a Sunday morning?
The following short video from Biblical counsellor Ed Welch, drawing on his book “Caring for One Another: 8 Ways to Cultivate Meaningful Relationships” (on order for the church library) highlights two simple questions you can use, even on a Sunday morning, to help you break past the small-talk barrier.
Click below to watch:
What does it look like to strike up an intentional conversation aimed at deepening our relationships?