#DON’T PANIC #GOD’S GOT THIS
From OurRock Newsletter, April-June, 2020 Issue
As I sat at my computer to prepare this quarter’s edition of the OurRock newsletter, many realizations flooded over me. First, I was reminded we don’t currently have a Pastor and therefore we’re without their words of wisdom, comfort or challenges. It then occurred to me all of our activities are suspended so I don’t have a lot of news to contribute. Well, I’m going to give it my best effort to publish a newsletter anyway. Pardon my stream of conscientious style, but here we go…
While the COVID-19 virus is rocking our world in many ways, the important things remain constant. 1) God is with us, loves us, cares for us and never leaves us alone. Pledge your life to God. 2) People love and care for us, our families, our friends and our Church family. Daily calls from kids, grandkids, family and friends are a GODSEND. Pick up your Church directory and call a church friend and catch up. 3) To my knowledge all of us are healthy and safe. Many of our daily lives aren’t much different. To those of us still working we pray for you and ask God to keep you healthy, wise in virus prevention and safe. 4) While we don’t currently have a pastor we have God’s Church family. A family that deeply cares and is there to help you should the need arise.
So, while we are sequestered at home count your blessings and do your part to save others.
#GOD IS WITH US #WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER #EVEN THE DARKEST NIGHT ENDS AND THE SUN RISES #HOPE #CALL SOMEONE #DON’T PANIC #WE STAND TOGETHER #PRAY FOR THE HEALTHCARE WORKERS #PRAY FOR THOSE WHO SUSTAIN US #PRAY FOR THE SICK AND THEIR FAMILIES #GOD IS ALWAYS WITH US #THANKFUL FOR MY CHURCH FAMILY
As your clerk I have been receiving email from Abingdon Presbytery. First there was a request to learn what we were doing about the virus. I reported we had cancelled all church activities in accordance with our Commonwealth and exploring ways to worship at home. Next there was a request asking if our church had virtual worship. I sent you the listing of Abingdon Presbytery’s virtual worship opportunities in Saturday’s email. Finally last week Abingdon Presbytery offered every member Church the opportunity to receive a gift of $2,000 to help our community with the impact of COVID-19. I’ve included the Presbytery’s letter in our newsletter. Our Session discussed the request and voted to accept the $2,000 gift and use the money to purchase food for our food pantry. What a kind, loving and wonderful act!
Nancy McDaniel organized our first round of Care Calls. She divided the names in our church directory and assigned a group of names to each Session member. Most members enjoyed the calls. Originally we envisioned we would call every week, several of us are rethinking the frequency and thinking we’ll call every two weeks. Someone has also suggested we rotate the list amongst Session members so we have the opportunity to call different people. Besides visiting as friends on the call we are learning about prayer list updates and other needs people have. We hope our calls are useful, we’re thinking we will continue to call until we have a permanent pastor. If you don’t want to be called you can always opt out.
With Governor Northam’s stay at home order extended to June 10th we aren’t planning worship or any activities for April and May. We hope to continue BackPack Buddies and reopen the Food Pantry if we can get a food supply. We were planning to have Summer Concerts again this year in June, July and August. At this point in time we don’t know if we will go forward.
Our Interim/Transition Team (interim pastor search committee) chaired by Mike Wilcox is on target to complete the first phase of their work. The Session will virtually meet with the team soon. Read Mike’s team update article for the details.
A Church member asked / suggested the following. “Has anyone thought about doing a live Bible study on our church Facebook? We have a lot of members on Facebook and this could be a wonderful outreach ministry in the life of our church while we are away.” If there is interest in this activity let me know and we will do our best to organize.
So, in closing my faith is in the Lord that he will watch over, protect us, love us and keep us safe. I will do my part by staying home and patiently wait for the virus to burn out. I will do my best to call somebody everyday and let them know I’m thinking of them and care for them. I will practice daily Bible and devotional readings, meditation and prayers for you, my family, friends, society and our prayer and shut-in people and I will ask for forgiveness and divine guidance on how to become a better Christian. While I miss being with people and worshiping God in Church I am learning how to worship God at home. During this time of Jesus’s resurrection may we, too be resurrected and transformed as God’s new people.
Peace, prayers and blessings, David