Update March 31st – Per Gov. Baker’s Stay-at-Home advisory, the building will remain closed through May 4th.
Update March 20th – Per local Health recommendations the building will remain closed through April 6th. Virtual Church playlists will be posted on our YouTube page every week.
March 13th, 2020
Hello Lynn Nazarene Church family,
I have been in much prayer this week as the world seems to be shifting under our feet. But, even in the midst of uncertain times I am reminded this morning that Jesus is still Lord, and he has still invited us to follow him. This is the God who often says to us in Scripture “Do not be afraid!” and “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27)
While we lean into faith in God rather than fear, we must still be aware of the reality we are living in at the moment. According to the scientists and health officials, COVID-19 is something we need to take quite seriously. Because of this, after much prayer and conversation with health professionals and the church board, we have decided to close the doors of the Lynn Nazarene building for two weeks, effective immediately.
Key points about this decision, and other decisions our cities are making:
– Most cases of COVID are mild and most people recover – there is no need for fear or panic
– Closings and increased social distancing recommendations are to slow the spread so the critical cases do not peak at the same time
Let me be clear, we are closing the doors, we are not ‘cancelling church.’ We have a mission to BE the church that is even more important in times of public fear and uncertainty. You may be wondering, what should I do?
First, regarding how we should function as individuals and families:
Listen to the health officials in your area and take seriously their recommendations. Stay home if you are sick, increase your social distance wherever possible, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with warm water when you come home, before you eat, after the bathroom, etc. Stay home as much as possible, work from home when you can.
Second, regarding how we should function as a church:
- When we feel inconvenienced, remember that COVID-19, and the steps we will take to slow the spread will have the deepest negative impact on people who are already vulnerable, either from health-related insecurities, or insecurities related to child care, finances, food, or ability to pay for rent. Use this reminder as an encouragement to:
- Pray! Pray especially for health care workers, those in highest health risk category, those who already have insecurities, and those who are making vital decisions for the health of the whole community.
- Increase your virtual presence in the lives of those around you. This is not an encouragement to spend more time on social media. I’m encouraging you to email, call, text, and facetime with people more often. We do not want people to be emotionally isolated when we are physically isolated.
- Finally, check on the folks in your immediate circle who you know have insecurities- help where you can while limiting contact (deliver groceries, help with rent, etc). Let’s see how creative we can be in caring for others around us, while not meeting them in person. (#caringcovid)
I am the first to recognize, there is a lot to take in, and the shape of the situation has been changing day by day. We do not need to give in to panic as we plan and engage life and church in a more creative way. Please feel free to connect with me personally about this, and I will be reaching out to you over the next few days. Please help spread the word among church members who have limited internet access.
We are working on ways to continue gathering virtually, and I will make you aware of them as soon as they are viable. We will reassess the closure and communicate next steps around the building before March 27th. As things change, I will make sure to communicate them with you.
Praying for you all in this, as I hope you are praying for others.