Attached is a video with some thoughts and updates regarding gatherings at Covenant Christian Community Church. Here is a brief summary of the content.
We have experientially learned, over the past seven months, that the church is not the building that we have at 95 Robert St. E. in Penetang. It is not even limited to those who gather regularly in the building. We have discovered something that the local church in the first 300 years of church history already knew - the church exists anywhere the local family of Jesus' followers is. To go back to a "building centric" model of operation would restrict the presence of Jesus that is currently worshiping and gathering all over Penetang, Midland, Tiny, and Tay each week.
That being said, we recognize the value and importance of gathering alongside other brothers and sisters in Christ on a regular basis for community, worship, and building each other up. It is clear that we will not be able to gather in full numbers inside on Sunday mornings any time soon.
So . . . we are inviting you to think creatively about how you can connect with each other safely in smaller groups in order to practice being a part of this family for worship on Sunday mornings. We want to support you in figuring out how to do so. Here are some ways we could start "re-gathering" in fresh ways for the present and the future.
Beyond Sunday morning, we have groups (house churches, Bible studies, and serving teams) that have begun to safely resume - socially distancing in homes or at the church. Our Ladies' Bible study meets each Wednesday morning and the building could be used by other house churches to safely gather if you just make arrangements with Crystal in the church office.
In addition to smaller gatherings, we recognize the importance of larger gatherings where we can be reminded that we are a part of something bigger and participate in a different way. Right now, that means meeting outside. To that end, we are continuing with Worship on the Lawn on Sunday afternoons and are planning on continuing this as long as weather permits. We will look for creative ways to gather as a church family throughout the winter - braving the cold like hardy Canadians! If you have creative ideas, please let us know!!!
We recognize that for many within our church family gathering with others in large or small groups is something that may not be wise and that you are not comfortable with. We 100% understand and support that and want to continue offering ways to keep you connected - either through offering things online, delivering DVD's, deacons making phone calls, or porch visits. (If you would like a porch visit or a phone call, let us know!)
We are Covenant Christian Community Church. The church is not the building. The church is not embodied in the staff or board or deacons. It is us, wherever we are as we on Sunday mornings and throughout the week learning to embrace being beloved and inviting others to discover that they too are beloved; practicing belonging and creating space for others to truly belong; and together becoming all that Jesus longs for us and has created us to be.
Thanks for being a part of this family with me and allowing me to be a part of it with you.