Message from the Elders, 21st August: Sunday Services in September and October in the building & online
I'm delighted to share with you our plans for re-opening our building on Sundays, in a way which we trust is spiritually healthy for us, and which follows the government guidelines for Covid-secure places of worship. As we come to these next milestones in our journey, we are conscious of the need to care not only for our physical health, but also to show as least as much care for our spiritual health.
I believe that September will mark a good time for many of us to begin to get back into a rhythm of attending Sunday worship services in our building. It's a good habit for God's people to gather together on Sundays for worship and to hear God's word. We are greatly helped in our walk with God when we are in that habit.
Therefore, from September we will be enabling a blend of in-person and online participation in our Sunday services. We will be able to have a maximum of 100 people in the congregation in the building for each service, socially distanced, wearing face coverings, and observing other guidance. Everyone else will still be able to participant online in the Sunday Services, as they will be livestreamed via YouTube and Facebook.
We estimate that you will be able to attend a service in-person roughly every 3 weeks, or possibly every 2 weeks as the number of our services expands, as I explain below. You'll need to prebook your place(s) via our website. For the other weeks, when other people are present in-person, you'll be able to engage online as at present. It's a new blend of being part of Sunday worship that we'll all have to get used to for the months ahead, but one we trust will sustain our spiritual health over this challenging period.
Let me outline the weeks ahead, which will show you the way we're planning to walk along the path step by step:
Sunday Sept 6th - 10:15am Service, which will be livestreamed from the building rather than pre-recorded as at present. We'll be starting a new teaching series in Jeremiah, which we believe is going to be God speaking to his people in a very timely way through his word.
Sunday Sept 13th & all the way to end of October, we are having:
9:15am Family Service, this is a new service, 45 minutes long, aimed at families with primary school aged children. We'll all be staying in the main auditorium and be exploring Eternal Truths for Young Hearts. We will be sharing more about this soon, but I am very excited about it!
11:15am Sunday Service - which will be our familiar Sunday Service, continuing the series in Jeremiah. Listen to the songs if you are in the building, and sing along if you are at home!
We will have Covid-Secure congregations present in the 9:15am Family Service from 13th Sept, and in the 11:15am Sunday Service from 20th Sept. And again, both services will be livestreamed so those not gathered here that particular week will be able to participate.
From October 4th, we will also introduce a 7pm Sunday Service, which will be the same service content & teaching as the 11:15pm Service, and again that will have an in-person Covid-secure congregation and be livestreamed online.
Then from November 1st, we are planning to start Bible Workshops in a new way, following guidance from the government, by having measures such as fixed groups and limited numbers each week. We'll engage with parents, carers and volunteers in the weeks to come about that.
As we share our plans for Sundays in the next couple of months, I want to say that I am sensitive to that fact that across the Church there will be a real variety of excitement and concern about gathering together in-person in the building. Some may feel the pace is too fast, others will feel the pace is too slow. Each of us has our own individual circumstances to consider too. If you'd like to speak with a leader here to help you think it through, please do so - we'd love to chat with you. In all things, we want to love each other well, maintain the unity of the Spirit, and keep on with our mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ in Nottingham, all nations and the next generation.
As I share how we see the steps ahead, I know that it's my role, alongside the other leaders here, to shepherd the flocks of Cornerstone as we journey into the future. And I trust, under the Lord Jesus, that these plans are the wisest way in which we can lead our flock, protect our flock and feed our flock - such that we emerge from this season not only with physical health intact, but with our spiritual health being restored and growing stronger.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. (Colossians 3:15-17)
With love and peace in Christ,
Lead Minister (on behalf of the Elders of Cornerstone Church)Cornerstone's YouTube Channel
Click below to hear our Lead Minister John Russell launch Faith to Grow as part of our Kingdom Ambition.Kingdom Ambition: Faith to Grow launch
Click below to watch our second Faith to Grow video.Kingdom Ambition: Faith to Grow part 2
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