COVID-19 Updates

March 14, 2020

We have made the difficult decision on cancelling services for Sunday, March 15th. In this video, Pastor Mike explains the reason behind our decision, as well as an outline for the days ahead.

This is a historic time both in our lives, our church, and our nation. God will see us through this. Our trust is Him at all times. Isaiah 26:3 (NASB) says “The steadfast of mind You will keep in perfect peace, Because he trusts in You.”

We will be contacting you via emails, texts, videos, and other means to keep you informed. We may over-communicate, but we don’t want to leave you without information.

Our primary objectives are that you not be infected and that neither you nor any of our church members unknowingly spread the virus. The command to “love our neighbor” will be the guide to our decisions.

To meet these objectives, we are undertaking several initiatives.  It is a fluid situation so there will undoubtedly be changes.

  1. We are canceling all services on March 15.  A worship service will be streamed on YouTube and Facebook at 10:30 The Southern Baptist Convention has asked the 47,500 churches in the convention “to commit to a dedicated time of prayer” in their services this Sunday.  We will do that during that live-stream.
  2. Wednesday night activities are canceled because Tonganoxie Schools are canceled.  We are uncertain what the future Wednesday night activities will be but we will keep you informed.
  3. For the next three weeks, we will have a Sunday worship service in the worship center. Sunday School and Adult Bible Fellowship are canceled. Nursery and Children’s Church are canceled. The exception is bed babies. The service will also be streamed in the Train Station. We encourage families with children who may make a bit of noise to worship there. The service will be also streamed on YouTube and Facebook.
  4. The CDC has recommended a distance of 4-6 feet between each person. We will encourage you to spread out across the worship center and the Train Station for the service.
  5. We will not pass an offering plate. We encourage you to give via PayPal from our website (click on “Donate” on the upper right hand corner of the home page), contacting us for a bank draft, sending us a check, sending us a check from your bank bill pay, or putting it in an offering plate in the foyer. The Square app register will be available in the foyer. There is hand sanitizer beside it. Please use the hand sanitizer before and after giving.

In addition to these changes, we would like you to consider the following changes in habits:

  1. Certainly we want you to stay at home if you feel ill.
  2. You should consider staying home if you are among the “higher risk” population, immunocompromised, over 60, etc.
  3. We ask that you refrain from shaking hands or hugging.
  4. We encourage you to wash your hands regularly and use hand sanitizer liberally. Information from the CDC about hand-washing is posted in the bathrooms. Hand sanitizer is available in the foyer.
  5. Be alert to outreach opportunities. It is good to bring someone with you to church. We welcome that. It may be more possible now than it has ever been to reach someone.
  6. Please regularly check our website and your email for new information. We will continue to add information as much as necessary. https://www.westhavenbaptist.org/covid-19/

Be encouraged!  Christ did not call us to fear, but to faith.  As a church and as individuals, we must not respond to the COVID-19 virus with either fear or carelessness.  Fear is an overreaction. We hurt ourselves and others when we are controlled by fear.

Carelessness is a failure to act. We hurt ourselves and others when we fail to act.  Wisdom and prudence should guide our actions and direct our minds. It’s why Solomon instructs us to “make our ear attentive to wisdom.”

God is always on the throne. We live and breathe because of Him. These are not normal times. We will get through them!  Our confidence is in Jesus!

Additional Notes:

  1. Parents who want to continue children’s teaching from Sunday School have a special resource that has been made available by Lifeway. It’s called “LifeWay’s Digital Pass.” Here’s how to access it.
    1. Step 1: Go to my.lifeway.com/redeem.
    2. Register if you are a new user or log in if you already have an account.
    3. Enter this redemption code: VZMD4SSQ38 (which churches are free to distribute).
    4. Click “Access” (if prompted to sign in again, sign in) and then click “My Dashboard,” and go to “LifeWay Kids at Home.”
    5. Download the activity page and one conversation sheet to use while watching the video session.
  2. If you run into a church member who is upset because they believe this threat is overblown, here’s a blog piece that explains why we need to take this seriously. https://medium.com/@tomaspueyo/coronavirus-act-today-or-people-will-die-f4d3d9cd99ca
  3. The decision to cancel services on March 15 was not taken lightly. It was made after taking the facts into consideration and in consultation with city officials.

March 12, 2020

West Haven Baptist Church is prepared to respond accordingly to the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation.

Please continue to monitor developments through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and take all appropriate preventative measures.

West Haven Baptist Church will continue to provide updates as more information is available and governmental agencies make on-going recommendations on COVID-19.

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