These days we are living in are filled with change. In the past two weeks, news about the Coronavirus has greatly impacted everyday life. Schools closing, events cancelled, toilet paper flying off the shelves and the call for ‘social distancing’ has, at best, disrupted our normal. Changes seem to be happening by the hour as more and better information is discovered on what we can all do to help each other overcome this virus. The Elders and Staff met last night to discuss best practices moving forward. Let me outline them for you.
- We are suspending all activities at the church for at least the next two weeks, starting immediately. With the official call for the cancelling of all gatherings over 50 people (some have suggested 10), we feel it is in the best interest of everyone to suspend ALL activities that regularly meet at the church.
- Worship Services will be provided via live stream on the Muncie Alliance Church YouTube channel. A link will appear on the Muncie Alliance channel page when we go live. Worship will start at 10 am as always and will have live worship music and Pastor Ted will be bringing the message.
- Youth Group will not meet until further notice. Lucas will be in contact with parents as to plans he is making for he, Natalie, students, and volunteers to stay connected.
- Prayer meetings, discipleship groups, etc. will also no longer meet at the church.
- Church Office Hours will not be regular as staff will have a choice of being in the office or working from home.
- We are asking that tithes and offerings be done online or sent in the mail. While normal functions are suspended, we still have ongoing expenses. We don’t know how long these changes will have to take place so we are asking everyone to continue to give as they normally would.
We are also anticipating a greater need for assistance and are encouraging those who can to give to the benevolent fund. This will enable the church to come alongside those that need help as we anticipate some will be affected economically.
Checks can be mailed to: Muncie Alliance Church /5601 West Jackson Street /Muncie, IN 47304.
- Helping in all areas. If you find yourself needing assistance or know of someone needing assistance, please contact the church office or one of the elders (contact information is listed below). These days will call for more than financial assistance and we want to be able to help in any practical way possible. If you are in the category of over 60 or have a compromised immune system, we want to help you get the things you need without having to compromise your own safety. Providing grocery delivery, getting prescriptions from the pharmacy, etc are all things we can easily provide. Please ask if you are in need!
- Office – Becky Merkel – 765-282-6119; email@example.com
- elders@Munciealliance.org – will send an email to all elders
- Matt Godfrey – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Dave Brand – email@example.com
- Bill Wright – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Daryl Winger – email@example.com
- Joe Trotti – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Maintain Community. This may be the most important part of this whole announcement. While we can provide worship and teaching online, we cannot duplicate the community aspect of being together. Those conversations over coffee in the lobby or after a church service we will now have to be more intentional and creative than ever before. The Elders will be making contacts weekly with those in the congregation but that will not be enough. We are asking each person reading this to make an effort to reach out, not only to those you would normally talk to, but those in the body that may benefit from such contact; the shut ins, the single parent, the widow or widower, the vulnerable. We can’t take for granted that everyone is being looked in on regularly. This will force each of us, every one of us, you and me together, to ‘do’ and ‘be’ the church in new ways for many of us. The church is not “closing” but having to alter how we do community. Who knows this may be a blessing in the long term!
As a part of Christ’s Body the Church, we all have a responsibility to serve those within our MAC family. We have an equal responsibility to serve those that are a part of our greater community of Delaware County and beyond. Let’s step out in bold faith, and trust the sovereign God we serve, while at the same time honoring the medical and government officials that are bringing the latest information and advice.
I am certain that grace will be needed as we all step into uncharted waters in the days ahead. Some will say that this all an overreaction, maybe. But if we are going to error let’s on the side of caution and grace as we walk through this together.
May God be glorified as his body seeks to represent him well and bring him glory!
Pastor Ted Harris