Ocala First Connection
Special Announcement
March 7, 2020
With the growing concerns over Covid-19 (a type of coronavirus) continuing to spread, coupled with the recent deaths from the virus in Florida, we wanted to share some information with you all before we gather for worship tomorrow.

In Isaiah 7:4, we hear the words: “Be careful and stay calm. Don’t fear, and don’t lose heart.” That is a helpful word for each of us as we live though another cold and flu season, but especially now as concerns over Covid-19 rise both locally and around the world.

Here are some important reminders from the  Centers for Disease Control  to keep in mind:
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least twenty seconds.

We will begin following some precautions at Ocala First UMC to ensure your safety. Our framing question: “How can I experience Christ, contribute to the strength of Ocala First UMC, watch out for the most vulnerable...and how can I avoid spreading a virus and remain as healthy as possible?”

1. If you are sick, stay at home. Follow our local government’s instructions about seeking help as you need it. 

2. Check in with people in your Sunday School classes, small groups, and others on your hearts and minds, particularly if you haven’t seen them for a few weeks. Let’s make sure everyone is okay, particularly those over the age of 70 in our congregation.

3. Out of an abundance of caution, we will be encouraging everyone to use non-touch modes of greeting. We will continue to be a warm and welcoming congregation in alternative ways (waving, peace signs, bowing and curtseying . . . see graphic below . . .)

4. We have hand sanitizer dispensers in the FLC and Sanctuary. We will make sure they are routinely filled, along with the soap dispensers in all bathrooms.

5. We keep only two months cash on hand, and some months we dip closer to a 45-day reserve. With such close margins, please be mindful of your financial giving to the church. Often when attendance is disrupted for any reason, paying our church bills becomes a concern. You can make contributions to the church online or mail a check, if needed. (CLICK HERE TO GIVE) We are grateful for you!

6. If you find that you need to miss Sunday worship due to illness, you can watch our 9:00 am service live online ( Facebook , YouTube , and our website ). You can also see recordings of our 11 am service on YouTube and on Cox Channel 21 on Sundays at 10:00 a.m.(HD Box required) (2 week delay).

7. Keep in your prayers those affected by Covid-19, especially citizens of China, and health care professionals and first responders who are on the front lines.

May God bless you and keep you.

Pastors Anne and David Fuquay

Visit our webpage for updates, sermon videos and more!
[352.622.3244]  [info@fumcocala.org]  [www.fumcocala.org]