Coronavirus and Westgate Church
As you surely already know, our country has begun taking drastic measures in the struggle to bring the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus) under control. While it is true that most cases are mild, it has become clear that it is a life and death situation for vulnerable members of the population, in addition to the fact that it may overwhelm our medical system causing even more hardship for those most in need of care.
For these reasons, the Elders have decided that Westgate must take strong action as we do our part to fight the spread of the virus. This decision is not made out of fear, but out of love for our neighbors, communities, and church family. If, by temporarily adjusting our church activities, we can serve those who are most at risk, we feel a moral obligation to do so.
Most importantly, we have decided to shift Sunday morning worship online. This means we will not be meeting corporately at the church building on Sunday, March 15. We will be sending a follow up email tomorrow with information on how to connect. We encourage you to consider gathering with a few other members of our church family who live in your area; the Centers for Disease Control have not discouraged smaller group gatherings as long as no one is sick and everyone washes their hands regularly.
Also, the Missions Luncheon with James and Zoe (to be held after the church service on Sunday) will be rescheduled for a later date. Other meetings scheduled to take place on Sunday or during the week (including Home Groups) may be cancelled or rescheduled. Contact your group or ministry leader to find out more information.
Additionally, most other church activities have been temporarily suspended. This includes the Choir, Youth Group, all Sunday School classes, Prayer meetings and Children’s ministry activities. Other activities, such as BSF, have decided to move their meetings online.
Right now, we aren’t sure how long these adjustments will be necessary and we will be evaluating the situation weekly to determine how to proceed. We will keep you informed as things progress.
These are unprecedented times. However, for the follower of Jesus Christ, there is no uncertainty and no need for fear. We are reminded in the opening words of Psalm 46 that we have a great protector:
God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble at its swelling. (Psalm 46:1-3)
Let us remember that in Christ, our refuge has come, our strength provided, and our very present help in trouble has dwelt with us. The earth may give way, and the mountains crumble, but Christ is already victorious, and we belong to him.
Lastly, we encourage you to look for ways to love and serve your neighbors during this crisis. While many people are uncertain and afraid, we can reach out with truth, love, and Christian service that testify to the gospel. May God be glorified by his Church.
Pastors Bruce and Travis on behalf of the Elders