BAY CITY CHURCH - Coronavirus Update
Message from our Senior Pastors
To curb the spread of the Covid-19 virus and its effect on our medical services, The Australian Federal Government has restricted indoor gatherings of 100 people or more. As such we will not be holding our usual services until such time as the restriction is lifted.
We started this year with the vision phrase for 2020 being “Faith Community”. I have spent the last 4 sermons speaking about the importance of our “Faith Community” and how we need to see and relate to it as believers (https://www.baycitychurch.com/podcast). Our Key passage has been Hebrews 10:19-25 including the exaltation to keep gathering together “especially as the day approaches”. It is no surprise that gathering together is under challenge and even banned but we can respond by holding and fighting for the desire to gather together and be ready to all come together again when the ban is lifted. A Faith Community is me and you coming together and there are ways that we can still practice this vital part of being a believer in this season.
These are some of the opportunities we have and are looking to implement;
Making people aware of midweek Lifegroups and increasing locations
Possible strategy to meet in homes on a Sunday around livestreamed services
Podcast messages and live stream opportunity through Facebook live
Intentionally inviting each other over for dinner or coffee or meeting in a park with kids.
All of these options will be for all of us that are not exhibiting symptoms of flu or cold as some cases of covid-19 are experienced as mild like a cold. Also anyone that has someone in their house who has Covid-19 or have returned from overseas and are in their 2-week self-isolation period.
For this Sunday however we encourage you to stay with your families and isolate as per instruction from Government authorities to do our part in this critical time to stop the spread of Covid-19 and the possible burden it puts on our health services for those that really need it.
We will communicate next week to you all as to what church gatherings will look like through the following communication platforms once we talk to those involved.
Emails and texts
We are not bowing down to the enemy’s plan to spread fear as we have “perfect love in us through The Spirit of Christ and it casts out all fear (1 John 4:18). In contrast I believe that this season is an opportunity for all of us to be ready to give a reason to all those around us for the hope we have in this day and age (1 Peter 3:15).
We as a Church Community are looking for opportunity in this time to be The Church to our greater community
One of the greatest challenges this issue has created is the inability for those who are elderly or vulnerable to gain access to essential items. Bay City’s mission has always been to look to the welfare of our city not just our own (Jerimiah 29:7) and be in a position to be able to be used by God to support the poor, the needy and those who are victims in our community. We hold (Matt 25: 31-46) as a central part of who we are and a responsibility of our Church Community “because whatever we do unto the least of these, we do unto our Jesus”.
With this mission clearly laid out for us in His Word, and our involvement as a church in welfare and support in our community for more than 8 years Bay City as a Church community will respond to this by commencing delivery of essential items to those who are vulnerable and in isolation through our Community FoodCare Program. We will be providing dates and times based on availability of stock from our suppliers and will invite you to join us as we respond to the call from those who are vulnerable and in desperate need. We will let you know of possible opportunities to be involved in the next week.
To this end we encourage you all to continue to be The Church! In prayer, in worship, in servanthood and in giving. As the needs of our community are for some increasingly critical we encourage you to continue faithfully in your giving. As we will not be holding corporate Sunday gatherings for a period we encourage you to give online (details below).
Remember, as God’s children, He ‘..has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7). In times when the world is immersed in fear and anxiety, we the Church have an opportunity to rise up and show our faith and hope that is in Christ Jesus; a faith that holds us steadfast and unwavering in uncertain times.
I have also provided a link to a 10 min message that I shared on vision Sunday in the first week of February around our Theme for this year “Faith Community”
We will also be sending out Bible Studies based on this year’s Sunday messages around Community over the coming weeks. We will be discussing additional home Life Groups with our Life Group and Leadership teams and will provide details on these shortly. Stay tuned for those!
Once again those details to stay up to date with what Bay City is doing with FoodCare deliveries , Lifegroups, and gathering in homes on Sundays we encourage you to follow our social media channels and listen to our podcasts. Links below;
We are praying for the health of our Nation and the Nations of the world, wisdom for our leaders, and God’s perfect peace and love to overcome all fear and anxiety. (Philippians 4:7, 1 John 4:18).
We love you and we are praying with you,
Ps Andrew and Mary Ann Harper