Dear church family,
It’s been astonishing to watch the spread of the Coronavirus and its impact on lives across the world in recent weeks. It’s no small thing, and recent government measures implemented with containment in mind have direct implications for us.
Having met tonight to discuss these, the Elders, with no small degree of sadness announce that Sunday services have been cancelled until further notice. Our decision rests in our desire to love each other by preventing contact and subsequent illness, but also in our desire to submit to ruling authorities.
The same measures restrict midweek ministries too, meaning all ministries requiring use of our building will also be suspended. We are, however, looking at alternative means of continuing ministries including prayer meetings and small groups by making use of available technology. We do out of a strong desire to maintain relationships, connections and discipleship in these next few weeks.
So, what will we do in the meantime? More details will follow, but we intend to provide:
- Sunday services online for you to watch at home on Sunday mornings.
- ongoing pastoral care for through the Elders, small groups, visitation teams, etc.
- ongoing discipleship, small groups, through use of technology.
- prayer meetings by the same means.
Don’t forget, there’s nothing to stop us from getting together in smaller numbers in the outdoors, walking and talking for a while (without physical contact and careful consideration of proximity, of course!).
This crisis presents Charlotte Chapel with a significant challenge. The lack of Sunday gatherings, and the impersonal nature of online meetings, may lead to loneliness and sadness in many. For some who struggle, the temptation will be to drift. Now is the time to work together. Now is the time to notice. The challenge of this time is to care well for each other, to look away from ourselves, and think of helpful ways we can communicate with, pray for, and serve one another in love.
If any of these decisions impact you significantly, and you have any questions, please speak to someone. The Elders are available, much in prayer and happy to talk. The pastoral team are too. The office is closed, but managed remotely. We’re still here, still answering calls, still answering emails. Small group leaders are still available; still a key part of our pastoral care. Together, we are eager to serve and care for our church family in these strange days, praying that even in our trials, God might work for our unity and our good.
Cast all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you (1 Peter 5:7).
In His Service & with love,