April 16 Response to COVID-19
As promised, we are occasionally updating you as best we can of our fluid response to COVID-19.
What we know:
- We know that in a crisis situation, you want Dayspringers on your side. A number of Dayspringers have stepped up in key ways to keep us moving forward.
- One example is that we have seen our technology and use of technology improve in ways that have helped us stay connected.
- Another is the way teachers have creatively adapted and made use of such options as mailing lessons to children or using Zoom meetings to keep working at instruction and connection.
- Your responses to our mini-church leaders contacting you are a lifeline in keeping pastors informed. Thanks for responding when you’re reached out to.
- We know that the current “Stay At Home” order from Governor DeWine and Dr. Acton lasts through the month of April.
- They have been very clear that they are encouraging churches to provide online worship services, and when possible to use Zoom type venues for other meetings.
- Those meetings for us include Elders, Church Council, Sunday School, Post-Worship Service Sharing, and Monday Evening Prayer. That list is not exhaustive, but it does give some perspective of what we are handling without physically being present with each other.
- We know that while ministry looks very different than what we are familiar with, ministry is still taking place. We know that you as the church family have stayed engaged. Whether viewing services online, reaching out to the classes you are teaching, or checking in on folks who are perhaps more at risk, you as the church are being the church.
What we anticipate:
- We anticipate reaching the end of April; and that means we should hear recommendations soon from state officials regarding what they will ask of churches in the future. The way information continues to change daily, we are not sure at all what the new guidelines/recommendations will be.
- We anticipate that when restrictions are eased, they will not be completely erased. Pastors are intent on being proactive in the conversation of what the immediate future might look like, as well as the future several months down the road.
- As such we want to reach appropriate decisions related to gathering for worship, church related meetings and other events.
- We will process such decisions going forward with Dayspring’s Elders, Church Council, and others at Dayspring who are well-positioned with unique information. We are blessed with people who are having to navigate the implications of this virus in the public health and medical field, as well as those who are uniquely informed due to other responsibilities.
When we are given the ability to meet in person again, we are going to show great grace to one another. Not everyone will be comfortable with the same response. Our intention will be increased access and connection as well as incorporating new faces into the Dayspring family.
- We are taking intentional steps to make sure that our live video feed of worship stays at a higher quality. Reasons include, but are not limited to:
- Some may still feel uncomfortable with being in larger gatherings.
- Some among us may be at greater risk than others.
- Sometimes we may not feel completely healthy and need to stay home. We will not want to put others at risk if our health is compromised.
- While we cannot know for sure, we will likely be asked to meet in smaller groups. That may mean holding multiple services (with time to do some cleaning in between).
- Outside of worship, some may be ready to meet in person while others feel it is best to join meetings online. That will include times of Prayer, Sunday School, and other church-related meetings. Again it will be crucial that we provide grace to those with different comfort levels. We are committed to maintain unity. Please read Romans 14 for some key guidance.
We are convinced that God knows our path forward, and we are committed to following the path God lays out for us.
Pastor Jim on behalf of Dayspring’s Leadership