Dear Redeemer members,
We are grateful for your continued patience as we navigate the implications of the recent COVID-19 virus outbreak. We continue to keep all those impacted by the COVID-19 virus in our prayers, along with their caregivers and family members.
As things continue to unfold it is becoming apparent that proactive steps that limit social contact are increasingly important in slowing the spread. Redeemer has been closely monitoring requirements and recommendations of the CDC, WHO, and local county health agencies.
Although many people who are healthy may not be dramatically affected by the COVID-19 virus, there are many people who have high risk. Even though these people may be smaller in number, it is critical that we do our part to help people on the margins, those who are more susceptible; and to respect the challenges that will be faced in our health care industry because of increased needs for care.
As Christians, we are very familiar with the concepts of self-sacrifice for the good of others, and of loving our neighbors as ourselves. To that end, it is important for us to be mindful of the greater good of our community, nation and world.
In the spirit of doing what is best for our community, the Redeemer Board of Directors has approved the following steps to help limit the spread of the virus.
All non-essential meetings and gatherings have been cancelled until further notice. This includes ministry programs. We are working with ministry groups to arrange online meetings through Google Meet and Go to Meeting. This is a useful tool for Home Groups, boards and committees, Bible studies, and other ministry groups. Beth Schult is helping to coordinate this effort with the assistance of our ministry staff.
Worship – Starting this Sunday, March 15 Redeemer will not be hosting live worship services, but instead will transition to live-stream and digital recordings for the next 3 weeks. A live-stream worship service will be held at 9:30, and a recording will be posted for continued use throughout the week. Details of how to access the live-stream will be coming soon. We will share information about Sundays after March 26 in future communications.
Redeemer School – Friday, March 13 Redeemer will have a half day of school which will be the last day of on-campus classes for at least the next three weeks. We will transition to distance (online) learning the week of March 16 with Monday, March 16 as a staff work day and distance learning to begin on Tuesday, March 17. Spring Break will take place as scheduled the week of March 30-April 3. The teachers and staff have been working to prepare for this transition and are ready to work with families and students for continued learning.
Church and School office – Certain business operations need to continue like finance, communications, school registration, and online programs. We will continue to post office hours, but encourage you to call in or email instead of coming on campus.
If you have any needs that the Redeemer community may be able to help with, please contact the church office.
The Redeemer board will continue to meet weekly to monitor the situation and respond appropriately.
Times of crisis and trial give Christians a wonderful opportunity to be a great blessing to our neighbors, our community and our world. In the midst of anxiety and frustration, Jesus calls us to bring hope, trust, and love. In many ways, God is always preparing us for times like this. It’s easy to trust and love when times are good. But God’s light shines brightest in the darkness. When times are difficult, the hope and love we find in Jesus are even more meaningful to our neighbors.
So, let me encourage you to be fervent and faithful in prayer. Let me encourage you to be positive, loving, and helpful. Let me encourage you to look for ways to love and serve your neighbors. Let me encourage you on social media to be a voice of compassion, hope and love. Let me encourage you to not give up meeting together – even if it has to be online!
Our Home Groups are turning into “Google Groups” in the face of this situation. It may be more important than ever to stay connected.
We will be making every effort to increase our weekly communications to keep you in touch with Redeemer’s ministry, with God’s Word and prayer, and with our Christian community.
Jesus said, “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16
Let your light shine in the darkness!
Pastor Paul Schult.