March 22, 2020 update: Owing to the lockdown in Karnataka, there will be no physical worship services at our usual location, until March 31, 2020. Please join our live worship services here
As most of you are aware, Covid-19 (the disease caused by Coronavirus) has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization. The virus has spread rapidly in China, Italy, Iran, and the United States. While India has not been affected as badly as other nations, the threat of the virus looms large on our land, and already one elderly person has died in our state due to the disease. The Karnataka state government has also ordered that malls and theatres be shut down and that mass gatherings be avoided.
In the light of this situation, the elders felt that we as a church need to act responsibly. As a church, we want to do our part to slow the spread of the virus and ensure that none of you (especially the vulnerable like the elderly and children) are put at risk due to negligence and carelessness. Hence, we have decided to cancel the following fellowship meetings of our church indefinitely until further notice:
- Wednesday evening outreach prayer is canceled (we will probably meet online).
- Thursday afternoon men’s study is canceled.
- Saturday men’s study is canceled.
- Saturday ladies’ study is canceled.
- Sunday evening fellowship is canceled.
In other words, we will be meeting only for the Lord’s Day morning worship service. All other meetings of the church stand canceled until further notice.
The elders have made this decision not out of fear or panic but of love and concern. We do not want to seek our own but our neighbor’s welfare (1 Corinthian 13:5). At the same time, we do not want to give up the habit of meeting together (Hebrews 10:25). We are striving to strike this balance in the above decision(s).
As individuals, you could meet up with one another. However, please take adequate precautions such as washing your hands, avoiding handshakes and hugs, and maintaining distance.
The elders will always be available to meet with you personally.
Also, for worship this week, we will take the following precautions:
- We will keep the main doors and the doors that lead to the bathrooms open to minimize hand touching.
- We strongly discourage handshakes, hugs, or other greetings involving physical contact.
- We will not distribute paper bulletin this week but post it on our WhatsApp group/share it online.
- We will not pass on the offering bag but keep an offering box at the back for you to drop your tithes and offerings.
- We will provide soaps and hand-sanitizers in our bathrooms to help us to wash our hands.
We urge anyone with symptoms of sickness of any kind to remain home and consult a doctor. Please do not panic but contact the elders and ask us to pray. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much (Jam 5:16 NKJ)
Let us continue to trust the Lord during this severe providence. Let us also pray for the following things:
- That God would give wisdom to our national and state leaders to curb the spread of the virus.
- That our hospitals will not be overwhelmed with Covid-19 cases.
- That we as Christians will respond to this situation with trust and hope and that our unbelieving friends would be drawn to Christ through our testimony.
Anugraha RPC Session