Dear Honeyridge Family,
In response to the Presidential Announcement on Sunday, 15 March 2020 – we have met as elders to consider the responsibility we have to care for and protect the people of God at Honeyridge and society at large, seeking to be sensitive to both the health crisis we are facing and to balance this with the spiritual blessing and responsibility of corporate worship, fellowship, preaching, Bible study and prayer.
Part of our decision making process was to ascertain the facts regarding this virus, and that our responsibility is to do whatever we can to limit its spread and impact on our church community and our city. Dr David Clark (CEO of The Aurum Institute) who is part of our church presented the medical and scientific facts we needed to help inform our decision. We would encourage you all to watch a video of his presentation here so that you understand the reality of what we are facing, and why we have taken the steps we are proposing. His presentation also includes some very helpful information to practically take care of yourself and those in your family, and helps to debunk much of the “fake news” and myths which are being circulated.
The key take home application of this presentation is that the most effective way to limit the spread and impact of this virus is to use this small window of opportunity we have to limit as far as is possible, all social interaction with other people.
In the light of this, we have decided to stop all Honeyridge Sunday services and all other weekly small group meetings & ministries from this Friday (20 March 2020) until after the Easter weekend (13 April 2020) – at which point we will revisit this decision in the light of the information available to us at that time. The COVID-19 epidemic is an evolving situation. New information, insights and impacts will develop every day, informing a changing response as we learn more. We will endeavor to stay close to the evolving situation so that we can adjust our stance appropriately and as quickly as possible in the interests of our church family and the community in which we serve.
During this time, we will continue to provide you with online resources to help you in your worship of God and the study of his Word. We will be recording our weekly Sunday Sermon during the week, and this will be uploaded to our Website and new App before Sunday. Our goal is to help you to hold a weekly Sunday worship time on your own, or with your family or a few friends, by providing you with Scripture readings, links to some worship songs to listen to and sing along with, and the link to the weekly Sermon. Also regular prayer items and updates will be sent via the App.
Regarding Easter, this means that we will not be able to hold our Easter Weekend services as planned, but we do still intend to hold the Easter Weekend Services at a later date, as soon as we are able to return back to our normal Sunday Worship gatherings. This decision will also impact our planned AGM scheduled for 15 April 2020 which will be postponed to a later date.
We would urge you to do whatever you can to both keep yourself healthy and away from exposure to the virus, but at the same time being willing to reach out in love and care for those who are in need. Many who are aged and alone at this time may face further isolation, and so we need to be very aware of any needs which they may have so that we can do whatever we can to help them at this time.
The Church Office will remain open as we continue to seek to serve the church community, and our elders are available to meet with you and pray with you as you may have need. We would just request that if you are feeling sick or are showing any signs of being unwell, that you do not visit the church office but rather phone or email us, and one of the elders will do their best to come and meet with you.
If you would like to let us know that you are sick or have any items we can pray for, please send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
We are thankful during this time of uncertainty to know our God is faithful and gracious, and he hears his children when we cry out to him in prayer. We have a great high priest in Jesus who understands all our weakness and struggles and calls us to approach His throne of grace in our time of need.
Please install the Church App (check your email / sms for details) and check your email regularly for updates, or phone the church office if you would like any more information. A number of trustworthy online resources relating to COVID-19 referred to in Dave Clark’s presentation are listed at the end of this letter.
With thankfulness to God for His grace all sufficient,
(on behalf of the Elders)
Links to these reliable resources are as follows: