March 31, 2020
Here at Hope, the church doors are closed, and the facilities are locked up. But here’s the good news! The church is not a building. The church is the people. And the mission work of our church goes on, even in these unsettling, anything-but-ordinary days of the coronavirus pandemic. We pray you’re doing well, and we want to share some quick updates with you.
We’ve been unable to hold regular weekend worship services for the past three weeks, and right now only the good Lord knows when we’ll be together again in the sanctuary. In the meantime, you are encouraged to make every effort to keep worshipping, utilizing the online version of our weekend and Wednesday PM midweek worship services. Visit Hope’s website, . New services and sermons will be added this week on Wednesday afternoon and Saturday afternoon. We encourage you to print up your worship bulletin, listen in, and make it as worshipful an experience as you possibly can. Other resources, including prayer request directions, daily devotions, and Bible study materials, are available on the same website page.
Although it’s heartbreaking to say, Hope’s worship services for Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday will be online this year. During Holy Week, we remember and commemorate the sacred events that form the very center of our Christian faith. Please be sure to join us for each of these special worship services on April 9, April 10, and April 12, as we recall the timeless story of Christ’s suffering, death, and resurrection … for us! We’ll be incorporating some video elements in these services, as we try to keep some of our congregation’s beautiful Holy Week liturgical traditions alive in this unusual year. We pray that the body of Christ here at Hope will join together for these sacred days of worship. 
As stated above, you can pass on any prayer requests through our website , and we will pass them along to the church. While we currently are not aware of anyone from our Hope community who has tested positive for the coronavirus, or has been directly exposed to a person who’s tested positive, many of us have loved ones who need the church’s prayers. The power of prayer is very real, and God promises to hear every prayer. Pray faithfully and daily for God’s help and intervention in our church, our community, our state, our nation, and around our globe. 
We have copies of the April-June daily devotional booklet that many of our Hope members enjoy, but we’re unable to distribute them currently. We are delighted to let you know that you are welcome to read the daily devotional on the website of Concordia Publishing House ( ). Click on the box that reads, “Today’s devotion from Portals of Prayer.”
A number of Hope members have offered to be of assistance to those members of the congregation who in the at-risk categories, or who are aren’t able to take care of their own essential needs. Please let one of the pastors know if you need help in some way.

For many years, Hope members have contributed food and grocery items to the Tri-Area Ministries Food Pantry, in order to help those in need in our community. During these trying times, the needs of the poor may be greater than ever. If you would like to contribute, please drop your donated items off at Tri-Area Ministries Food Pantry(149 East Holding Avenue, Wake Forest) on Mondays or Wednesdays, 10 AM – 1 PM. A list of needed items is available on their website ( ).

We heard about a Go Fund Me effort out there in the community, to benefit ChurchNET, an organization sponsored by several local churches (including ours) that helps folks in need to pay utility bills. For more information, or to contribute, go to their website .
Even though the building is closed here at Hope, church is still going on! Pray to God to help you be the church this week. Reach out and offer help to a neighbor. Worship online. Be a faithful steward. Gather together a small group of church members online. Study your Bible. Share what’s going on at Hope via your social ministry posts. Pray for those in the church, and offer to pray for the people you interact with outside the church. We are the church!
God be with you until we meet again!