Dear friends in Christ Jesus,

I am writing to keep you up to date on Oakland’s response to the spread of COVID-19. On Monday, March 16, I met with our staff, as well as our Deacon Chair Susan York, Personnel Chair Heath Sessions, and Finance Chair Carl Compton. In response to the CDC and governmental recommendations, we have made the following decisions which are being implemented immediately.

  • In-person Worship Services for the following three Sundays (March 22, 29, and April 5) have been suspended. In place of these worship services, the staff will provide recorded worship opportunities, incorporating music, sermons, age appropriate lessons, and follow up Bible Study lessons. These resources will be made available to the church via email, our website, and social media.

  • All in-person activities at Oakland have been suspended until further notice. This includes Wednesday Night activities, Lenten Lunches, Committee meetings, Sunday School and Bible Study Groups, Children and Youth activities, and all outside groups using our campus.

  • The church office hours have been adjusted to the following times: Monday-Thursday 8:00AM to 3:00PM. On Fridays the church office will be closed. Ministers and staff will continue their normal work, even if from home, though Minister visitation will cease. We are not allowed to visit hospitals and nursing homes. In addition, we ask that you refrain from visiting the office if you feel sick or can be classified as a vulnerable individual. The reduced traffic flow will be vital to keeping all of us well.

  • Financial expenditures have been placed on lockdown with the exception being monthly bills and staff compensation. While we are blessed with an adequate reserve, no one knows the economic future.

  • The Ministry Center will close to clients. Limited behind the scene work will still take place from volunteers. Contact Caroline Krueger for more information.

  • Deacon nomination and election will be moved forward one month. Nominations will take place in May with an election Sunday to be determined in June.  

  • Oakland Day School will follow the same schedule as Rock Hill School District 3.

I realize all of this can sound daunting, but we believe these are the best steps for us to take as global citizens in protecting our most vulnerable.  We are also taking steps to remain the presence of Christ at the crossroads of life, even if that presence is from a distance. Here are just some of those ways:

  • If you need to speak with someone, please reach out to a minister or your deacon. Also, you can still use the minister on call number (803-328-3864, Ext. 0).  We are here to listen and help in ways that we are able.

  • I have called on our Deacons and Sunday School leaders to remain in contact with each person in their group. If you need assistance in knowing who your Deacon is, please contact the office.

  • For those in need of grocery assistance, we have set up a delivery system. We understand that elderly and vulnerable individuals may not feel comfortable venturing to the store. Please let the church office know if you are in need and would like groceries delivered to your home.

  • We have reached out to our partner school, Sullivan Middle, in offering assistance with students and faculty. Should a need arise that Oakland can help fulfill, we will let the congregation know.

  • We have connected with other churches to assess how we can join together in ministering to our community. As opportunities arise, we will keep you informed.

  • The Day Center at Pathways continues to be open to our homeless population. They are in need of Lysol, paper towels, toilet paper, bleach, disinfectant wipes, gloves, masks, coffee, and prepackaged snacks. If you would like to donate items, please bring them to the office and we will deliver them to Pathways.    

I would also encourage you to continue giving tithes and offerings so that bills and ministries are supported. This is vitally important. You may do this through our website ( ), the Breeze app, texting “Give” to 803-599-3738, using automatic drafts, or mailing your gift to 1067 Oakland Avenue, Rock Hill, SC, 29732. If you need assistance with any of these methods, please contact the church office.

I recently heard someone say: “we are building the plane as we fly.” That expression seems appropriate in these uncertain days as information changes hour to hour, and sometimes minute to minute. Thank you for being patient as we figure this out together. Continue to take care of yourself, your neighbors, and remember you are one in whom Christ dwells.  

Prayers for this unpredictable journey ahead,
Pastor Jeff