Covid-19 Update at Chapin Presbyterian

Latest News from our Pastor

March 19, 2020

Dear Saints:

Shorter Catechism:   

Q. 1.   What is the chief end of man?
A.  Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy Him forever.

Our purpose in the Christian life is to bring glory to God. As a church, one of the central ways we do this is corporate worship. The Session met this week to determine how best to fulfill our purpose together in the midst of recommendations from our President, our Governor, the CDC, and our own medical task force. We desire always to propel you to your purpose of glorifying God by loving God with your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and loving your neighbor as yourself. Our plan is to continue a virtual corporate worship in our homes rather than at 600 Old Lexington so that we can avoid enabling the spread of the Covid-19 virus in these initial stages. Here are some bullet points about what we are developing. Keep in mind (please!) that some of these endeavors are stretching us in familiar areas, and others are brand new, ground-up builds to find our feet in an upside-down time.

  • Worship: Our encouragement is for every household in our congregation to listen to a video sermon that will be provided to you on Sunday morning at 9:30 a.m. We want the leaders of the homes to step up and lead in your homes by receiving and accessing a link via email that will take you to the sermon to view on your device. This Sunday it will be a sermon only, in the future we hope to include music from Marissa and others. This will be our plan for March 22 and March 29. This is a new build! We will meet the challenges that are sure to come up as we grow. All other activities church related on-site are postponed until further notice. This includes the Installation service planned for 3/22.
  • Children: Jackie will provide material to families with children on a weekly basis that is top notch. There will be devotional material, videos, printable crafts, etc. If you are home together as a family with little else but school on the agenda, your elders strongly encourage you to consider how God is building this into your life during this season to re-calibrate devotional life for you. What an opportunity! We want to provide you with all you need so that this is a lay-up for you. Dads, carve out the time!
  • Students: Jenna is investigating some of the ways the groups that meet weekly can do so via Zoom. Zoom is an easy platform to use and it allows video conferencing for up to 100 people free for 40 minutes or less. It’s simple. Google to become familiar with it, and look for more information to follow.
  • Music: Obviously, choir is not an option at this time. Marissa, however, is working on some musical resources that you can use in family devotions that we will provide weekly. Also, she is busy building the ways for us to include music in the online broadcasts of our Sunday worship – even if that’s just for these two weeks.
  • Adults: We are busy brainstorming how to continue contact with you throughout the week. More than likely, it will consist of an emailed devotional from me and some videos also (similar to Sunday, but shorter!). For our small groups, we are developing ideas similar to the students. Zoom groups to meet around a passage from God’s word to chat and pray. Connection to one another will prove to be challenging but important.
  • Giving: The Finance Committee is working fast this week to provide our church with an online giving option. We hope to have it set up by the end of next week. When that is in place, we will send you an email from them regarding the emphasis on giving in the days ahead and instruction on how to use the online giving option. We are very thankful for their work to get this up and running! This is also a new build! I am so excited to watch God’s people come together to grow and adapt in different ways.
  • Ministry: We know there will be obvious areas for us to serve our community. As you become aware of needs, please reach out to your shepherd/elder so that we can grow our plan to take the gospel to Chapin in the midst of this crisis. Pray with us that we will be a light of hope in the midst of what is rocking the world on a global scale. For He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world!     —1 John 4:4

I opened with Question 1 from the Shorter Catechism, so I would like to close with Question 1 from the Heidelberg Catechism:

Q. What is your only comfort in life and death.                                   

A. That I am not my own, but belong with body and soul, both in life and in death, to my faithful Saviour Jesus Christ. He has fully paid for all my sins with His precious blood, and has set me free from all the power of the devil. He also preserves me in such a way that without the will of my heavenly Father not a hair can fall from my head; indeed, all things must work together for my salvation. Therefore, by His Holy Spirit He also assures me of eternal life and makes me heartily willing and ready from now on to live for Him.

Brothers and Sisters, take great comfort in the fact that you have a great Savior. Your heavenly Father has His grip firmly around you. Nothing will happen to you outside His plan and His design. And He is good!

Resting in His Sovereignty together,