May 14, 2020
Hello Church Family! We hope that you are staying healthy and encouraged during this season of restricted gatherings in response to the COVID-19 crisis. As many of you are aware, Federal and State officials have introduced a “phased” plan for reopening our Country and States.
We have been monitoring these prayerfully and diligently to understand the implications of these directives for the life and ministry of Antioch. As we have mentioned in some of our online services, we will also be implementing a “ phased” approach that will allow us to begin meeting in person, while also respecting the directives of the government and health concerns of people in our community.
Updates regarding this plan will be communicated as restrictions continue to be lifted. When new information is available it will be emailed to you and can also be found by visiting the Community Updates page on our website here.
Phase One of this plan, which we are in right now, does not include changes for Sunday Gatherings as the gathering restrictions are still limited to groups of no more than 10 people. We will continue to provide online services for you and your family to participate in together on Sunday mornings. We have encouraged all our group leaders to continue connection through the blessing of technology using platforms like Google Hangouts, Zoom, and FaceTime. We recommend that all groups connect via video-conferencing and for any in-person meetings, groups should use appropriate caution.
We would love to help get you connected into a group, if you are not already. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In Phase Two of this plan, we will shift from equipping individuals and families, to focusing on equipping groups. We will be communicating more information about this phase as restrictions are lifted in the coming weeks. We believe it will look like groups meeting in homes or community spaces to participate in Sunday services together on Sunday mornings – similar to what our IN Sundays have been in the past, but also different!
Phase Three will entail a long-anticipated return to our public gathering, with safety standards in mind. While we don’t want our church to revolve around a Sunday service, we are very excited about being together again. We don’t have an exact date of when this will be, but we do believe that it won’t be a return to “normal” but rather a new normal. We will have to change the way we do communion, greet each other and even do KidZone, but we will do it so we can be together again! We will keep you informed with details as we approach this phase.
Please continue to pray for us as we pray for you. We truly are viewing this time and this ‘phase’ as an opportunity to equip each individual, family, and eventually group in our church. We love and miss you and eagerly anticipate the day when we can gather all together again in person. Until then we want to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leading and faithful to express love for you all and our community.
Jeff Snyder, on Behalf of the Elders of Antioch
May 22, 2020 – A Second, Brief Update