COVID-19

A letter from Pastor Joe and Leaders To The Neighborhood Church

Neighborhood Family and Neighbors,

 

The Coronavirus (COVID-19) has reached pandemic level and has gripped our world in an unprecedented fear and become a worldwide concern. Those effects have reached not only the United States, but also our local community here in Bentonville and NWA. Our heart and prayers are with each of you as we embrace unexpected and dramatically changed routines and lives. While being in constant communication with local authorities, schools and local churches, The Neighborhood Church also has been in prayer and proactively working alongside the CORE Team, Staff and Key Leaders to develop and implement an immediate plan and a short-term plan as we witness the daily impact of the spread of this virus on our culture and abroad. 

 

Firstplease be in prayer alongside our church and all churches as we embrace hope, peace and share the love of Christ in the midst of growing fear. While the expression of how we do church will change in the coming weeks, the love of Christ and the gifts of the Spirit within us can and will continue to grow and be nourished. This is our hope, wherever we find ourselves. 

 

HERE IS WHAT IS HAPPENING THIS SUNDAY...March 15th
(this is updated hourly and is subject to prayerful change with new information we receive)

We will be postponing the nextSTEP Sunday event following worship. We have thoughtfully and fully worked through gathering people together and believe for the health and safety of all that postponing the event following worship is the best option. In addition, we have asked our guest speaker, Justin Grimm, to reroute his trip and head home to his family for his own safety and ours. We care deeply for all in the church and want to promote a peaceful worship environment without fear this Sunday.  We will reschedule nextSTEP Sunday as part of worship for a later date.

 

Regarding worship this Sunday, we have worked diligently to create a space that allows people to worship if you desire.  Our focus will be prayer, to add peace and to calm our hearts. There will be no commitments this Sunday for nextSTEP Sunday, only worship. We will have our normal scheduled worship at 9:00am and 10:40am
 

We will have worship available LIVE and ONLINE this Sunday on Facebook. (if we have any changes we will update via email and text and online).

HOW DO WE CREATE A SAFE SPACE THIS SUNDAY?


Here are the measures our leadership teams have implemented and are in process of implementing to provide a safe space this Sunday.

  • We have contracted our cleaning company to do a full sanitization on the church prior to Sunday. This is all of worship, every chair, all classroom and all toys in kidCITY, etc.
  • We will prop doors open on Sunday in an effort to remove unnecessary touching of handles. Greeters will be present to welcome you and say Hi.
  • KidCITY volunteers will check-in all families at the kiosks to ensure minimal touch to screens.
  • Fellowship Volunteers will pour and serve all coffee to individuals. This includes the tea and lemonade areas in the church also.
  • Restrooms will be stocked with paper towels and antibacterial soap and toilet paper.
  • Hand sanitizer will be available in multiple areas throughout the church.
  • Offering Baskets will not be passed, but our “Bible Boxes” will be repurposed for “Giving Boxes.” You can drop any donations in these boxes. We will support online giving and make that available for all. This also avoids unnecessary picking up and sharing of bibles.
  • We are removing all chair back cards and pens to avoid any areas where the virus could remain for prolonged periods of time.
  • Communion will not be served this Sunday. But we will share a time of open prayer for the community and lay those prayers of our heart at the Altar of God. 


HOW YOU CAN HELP CREATE A SAFE WORSHIP ENVIRONMENT...


Here is how you can help to create a safe worship environment for you and all that are gathering...

  • We ask those who are going to attend worship to practice good hygiene, wash your hands for at least 30 seconds with antibacterial soap, and dry thoroughly, avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose, cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, 
  • If you feel any symptoms, we do ask that you stay home to heal and rest.
  • Please inform yourself fully regarding COVID-19 (CLICK HERE). Education and awareness helps to mitigate fear and will guide each person as to your comfortability in being present in worship this Sunday. If you answer yes to any of the questions in the CDC document, regardless of symptoms, physicians recommend self quarantine for two weeks.
  • Please maintain space and avoid high-fiving (we know this will be hard), hand-shaking, hugging, and practice air-fives. Pastor Joe will teach this on Sunday.


HOW DO WE MOVE FORWARD IN THE COMING WEEKS...


We will be moving to online worship for the next two weeks, March 22nd and 29th. If you feel that staying home is best for you and your family this Sunday, please join us online on Facebook. We will update weekly with how to gather on Sunday following these two weeks. We are going to work immediately to create online spaces for kidCITY, youth, LIFEgroups and other ministries to continue discipling and growing our church faithfully while we are separated physically. 


Please watch closely for communication as we work to meet you where you are! You can help us to reach people by inviting others to join you online with our community during this time, we would love that. 


Prayerfully, thoughtfully, and always thinking of our neighbor who we love,

Pastor Joe Liles, the CORE Team, Staff and Key Leaders

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