Dear First E-Free,
The church leadership connected over the weekend and decided that the best decision was to continue suspending all in-person programs at this time. We made this decision based on the fact that (a) Sioux City schools are still closed; and (b) Coronavirus infections are continuing to grow in Iowa and neighboring states each day. As well, you likely have now heard that the President has asked for closures to continue until April 30 at a minimum. At this point, the goal of serving our community well and having a good testimony continues. We want to do what we can to protect people who are especially vulnerable, while also recognizing that this virus poses a potential threat to everyone who would attend a worship service or Bible study if we were to resume meeting again. We will keep you posted as soon as we know more. In the meantime, pray for the day when we are able to meet again face to face!
I’m encouraged to hear that many of you have been taking in our online Sunday school and worship services each week. We will continue to post those as well as sending out prayer requests and updates on Mondays. Similarly, on a pastoral note, let me offer my thanks for how you are each taking care of one another during this time – I’m hearing lots of reports of phone calls, emails, cards in the mail, and messages online. Folks, these may seem like small things. Perhaps they even seem unimportant in light of all the changes happening in our lives right now. But I would argue the opposite: these small efforts amount to something huge: they amount to growing in the faith, building strong relationships with one another, and exampling Christ’s love to one another.
Alongside each of you, I continue to pray that the Lord would grant us all – here and around the world – relief from this disease. I pray for those who are currently sick or in the hospital, that they would recover and give the glory to God. I am praying for those who are afraid, upset, or worried – that in whatever case and whatever circumstance, the Lord would bring the reassurance and peace that is needed. Friends, I can’t wait for us all to gather together again, but until that time, know that you aren’t alone – that the Lord cares for His people, and that He knows exactly what each of us is going through.