UPDATE 1st April, 2020
Update: 25 March 2020
A new week and a new set of Government requirements and stricter recommendations from health professionals as we navigate COVID19 together. In what seems like a contradiction, these days of isolation and distancing have presented us with opportunities to strengthen relationships and build community perhaps like never before.
This week, like last week, we are looking for new and imaginative ways to enlarge our house and spread out our home.
Be sure to stay well informed about requirements and recommendations, as they are changing rapidly. See: https://www.health.gov.au/news/health-alerts/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-health-alert
On March 23, the Department of Health issued a notice that all non-essential gatherings be discontinued. This includes places of worship, both indoors and outdoors. While it grieves us to stop meeting in person, our greater responsibility is to love one another and serve our community well by adhering the very best health advice at this time.
In response, we will not be conducting services, or any other ministries, on site at either Tumbi or Bensville campuses until further notice.
In the meantime, we are planning new initiatives to help us to stay focused on Christ and connected as His body in these testing days. Take a look…
Q: Will there be an online service?
A: Of course! We will publish a single service each Sunday morning from 9.30am at https://www.coastcommunity.church/live The messages will be recorded, so you can watch any time.
Q: What about kids programs?
A: Glad you asked! Kids programs and materials will be posted each week athttps://www.coastcommunity.church/kidsonline
Q: How will youth stay connected?
A: Nothing new here… keep in touch on social media.
Q: How will we know what’s going on each week?
A: These are great questions! Each week we will post a video message here: https://www.coastcommunity.church/updates which will include important updates as well as perhaps some questions and materials for your weekly home groups. We will also send links to these updates via SMS and email
Q: Are other activities taking place at Church during the week?
A: Unfortunately not. All non-essential gatherings have been cancelled until further notice. This includes craft groups, Woven, youth and kids ministries etc.
Q: Are we still going to try Home Church?
A: This is a tough one. With requirements around social distancing and non-essential gatherings getting tighter, gathering people in your home in this way is no longer permissible. Instead, you might want to connect via skype, hangouts or zoom either before or after the weekly message. We will pull together some tips for hosting a virtual home church… stay tuned!
Q: Is Home Church different to Home Group?
A: Seriously… these are very good questions! Yes – they are different. Home Church is gathering on a Sunday (ideally), either remotely or in-person, for a church service. Worship, a message and even communion are important parts of this gathering. Home Group, on the other hand, is mid-week and follows different formats in different groups. Some are for Bible study, others focus on conversation and prayer. Under these new restrictions however, gathering physically for Home Group is not allowed until the government lifts restrictions.
Q: What else can we do to stay connected?
A: Be intentional about picking up the phone checking in with each other. Think about people outside of your normal church connections. For example, who sits near you on a regular Sunday morning… do you have their number? Do you have a system or roster in your home group to check in with everyone?
Similarly, if you are the one feeling a little isolated and out of touch, please send a NOTE and we’ll be in touch.
Q: What if I have friends, neighbours or colleagues who are feeling disconnected?
A: You guys are good! Here is our chance to extend kindness in new and practical ways. Invite them for an ‘e-coffee’ over skype, or zoom or messenger etc. Perhaps invite them to watch a service online. And as far as it is safe and reasonable, extend whatever practical support you can.
As we navigate these strange days together, remember that we can have great confidence in our ever-present God. Listen to what the prophet Nahum says:
The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; he knows those who take refuge in him.
Coast Community Church
Ministry Leadership team