In a recent HORIZONS column, I wrote of the sentinel’s role in looking to the horizon to catch a glimpse of the future. As it turns out, daily updates on the coronavirus only seem to cloud our vision of the future. It goes in and out of focus and we wonder what the next news report will reveal.
In the meantime, we can take a clear look at the present moment. One thing we can see very clearly—the church has not stopped being church! Remember the three rules of Wesley: do no harm, do good, stay in love with God. We’re on it!
Do no harm—continuing online worship and modeling safe practices of social distancing and wearing masks whenever we’re out and about. Our Re-Gathering Task Force is hard at work making plans for the day when safe and faithful in-person worship will again be possible.
Do good—supporting Upward Bound House, the Haiti Mission, Westside Food Bank, and our front-line health care and service providers; generous giving to the church; reaching out to congregation and neighbors with messages of love and care; resourcing our stressed-out families through in-home Sunday School, youth ministry, and the distribution of 100 Vacation Bible School resource kits.
Stay in love with God—through worship and music and Messy Church at home; Bible Study and spiritual growth groups; ZOOM fellowship in Coffee Hour, Men’s Breakfast Bible Study, Prayer Quilt Ministry, Shareringers, and church committees; unceasing prayer for one another and for greater justice in our world.
The church has not stopped being church! We’re inspired to new forms of innovation, creativity and outreach—all to love God and our neighbor as ourselves. Thanks be to God for the abiding presence and power of the Holy Spirit in and through it all!