First Baptist Church Family,
In our most recent deacons’ meeting (Sunday March 7th), our deacon body discussed the upcoming changes to COVID-19 policy from Texas Governor, Greg Abbott. Based upon the guidance of our deacon body, starting this coming Sunday March 14th, we will be making some changes to our COVID-19 policy that has been in effect since August. Those changes are as follows:
1. While the wearing of masks will be encouraged, masks will not be required on Sunday mornings. We will continue to make masks available in our foyer for anyone who chooses to wear one.
2. Every pew in the middle section of our sanctuary will now be open for seating. We will continue, however, taping off every other pew in the outside sections so that anyone who would still like to attend a worship service in person while also social distancing will be able to do so.
3. We will continue to ask students and adult volunteers in our Youth Ministry to wear masks while in attendance on Wednesday nights as long as Grandview ISD continues to require masks be worn by students on their campuses. One of our motivations for requiring masks of students all year has been to support our local schools’ policies.
4. According to that same reasoning, we will continue to ask parents to wear masks in our building when they are dropping off and picking up their children on Tuesdays and Thursdays for our Children’s Day Out program.
5. We will continue to provide access to both masks and hand sanitizer throughout our building, and we will continue doing our part to sanitize surfaces in between services. We ask that you continue to practice tried and true behaviors like covering your mouth when you cough, periodically washing your hands, and staying home if you feel sick to help mitigate the spread of illness.
6. We will continue to stream both our 8:30am and our 11:00am worship services on Facebook Live every Sunday morning.
As a sidenote, COVID-19 policies, ranging from the federal to local levels, have become the most recent issue causing significant division in our country, and that division has even extended into the realm of the Church. May I encourage you to no longer allow the Enemy to use COVID-19 issues to divide Christ’s Church. May we all show Christian love and empathy for all those who are tasked with leading through this difficult time. I call on you to pray for President Biden, Governor Abbott, local authorities, and even our own deacon body, as each navigate what policies are best for their particular context. Above all, love God and love neighbor. There’s a significant chance you will encounter a neighbor who holds very different views than your own in regard to COVID-19. How can you show that neighbor the love and grace of Jesus, rather than trying to win the argument?
As the outlook of the current pandemic appears to be improving weekly, we always pause to give God all the glory for every piece of good news. Every good and perfect gift does indeed come from Him. We know that in Christ, we have absolutely nothing to fear; not societal discord, not an international pandemic, not economic uncertainty, not raging winter storms, not personal loss, not even death itself. And THIS is why we gather to worship our God… because He is THAT good. I look forward to worshipping Him alongside you this Sunday!