|We here in the West Chowan Baptist Association are committed to the task of "producing much fruit" (John 15:8) by assisting our churches in the process of making "Christ Followers who will Follow Christ." Our vision of making "Christ Followers who will Follow Christ" is driven by the imperatives of Christ which are hung on the following three non-negotiable characteristics of a Christ Follower: 1) GIVE UP by Surrendering (Luke 9:23), Sacrificing (Luke 14:33) and Listening (John 10:27), 2) GIVE IN by Abiding in His word (John 8:31), Obeying His commands (Luke 5:27), and Walking in His Light (John 8:12), 3) GIVE OUT by Loving one another (John 13:35), becoming a Servant (John 12:26), and Sharing our faith (Matthew 4:19).|
As of Tuesday, May 26,
THE WCBA MRC WILL RESUME NORMAL OFFICE HOURS
MONDAY - THURSDAY, 8AM - 5PM
The office is open to a maximum of 10 people at once, practicing safe social distancing
per the governors order.
Wondering what to do?
Thinking of how to reopen once the restrictions are lifted?
Click below for resources detailing how your church can utilize the CARES Act:
Click for an article detailing how churches and pastors are eligible for relief in the stimulus package
A WORD FROM TERRY
May 12, 2020
THINGS TO CONSIDER REGARDING “RETURNING TO CHURCH”
The words we have all been waiting to hear have finally been spoken by our governor. Those words are “we can now begin to reopen.” With those words we can now seriously begin thinking through the process of returning to regular church gatherings. However, there are a lot of decisions and questions pastors as well as church leaders need to address BEFORE we can come back into the buildings. We cannot wait until the day of, there are decisions and protocols that must be both addressed and communicated to church members along with those new attendees we have managed to reach with our online activities.
Let us consider the following questions realizing there are many more that need to be asked:
- WIll there be singing?
- How will we take up the offering?
- Will we pass the offering plates like we normally do?
- When will we start back with Sunday School/Small Groups?
- How will we protect the people during baptisms and communion?
- Are our folks going to be accepting of wearing masks and checking temperatures as they come through the door every Sunday?
- Will we continue to livestream the services for those afraid to be in the buildings yet?
- What are some training needs of our leaders and teachers before they are accepted back as teachers or leaders?
- Should we not keep the changes we made with the deacons shepherding their portion of the flock?
- Finally, what sanitation protocols will we need to incorporate prior to and while we are returning to the buildings? Will these protocols be sufficient to make those coming back comfortable?
As you can see there are so many things that need addressing before we can actually return to our buildings and some sort of regular gathering.
“Experts” have stated that there are three basic expectations of the church here in North America after the pandemic:
- We should expect that some churches will not “come back.” Some have estimated that 400 + SBC churches in North Carolina alone will close their doors as a result of this pandemic (I am of the opinion there is more at play with these churches than just this pandemic which is leading to their closing. That must be addressed as well).
- We should expect that a good number of churches will rush to get back to “normal” by returning to the way they operated prior to the crisis. I believe this would be a big mistake.
- We should expect some to come back ready to do whatever it takes to THRIVE as His church and never be content with the “old normal” again.
Without fervent prayer, churches will not “THRIVE.” As we prepare to return, there should be clusters of pastors, church leaders, and members gathering to pray in small groups. Association-wide, we should be emphasizing prayer. To that end, there are two basic efforts I will be pushing over the next few weeks and the details will follow soon:
- I will look at beginning a “Iron Sharpening Iron” zoom gathering with our pastors. We will discuss reopening, new norms, and a whole list of things that will be helpful as we navigate the fluid nature of our times. Additionally, we will make this a time of reflection, fellowship, and certainly prayer.
- We will also “rekindle” our prayer emphasis within our association. In fact, I am looking at having 30 days of concentrated prayer among our churches and their members.
I would ask that you pray for me as I wait on Him to give wisdom as we move forward and the energy to serve our churches as needed. It has been and continues to be a great honor to serve the sweet folks of the West Chowan Baptist Association. I look forward to seeing the Lord at work and watching the many ways He will REVIVE HIS CHURCH!
A Word from Baptists on Mission: WHAT CAN YOU DO ABOUT THE CORONAVIRUS CRISIS?
The Coronavirus is a major concern in most every household across America. What can we do as Christians to love our neighbor and care for ourselves and others during these stressful days? 2 Timothy 1:7 tells us that “God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of love, power, and a sound mind.”
Below are some great suggestions to help prevent the spread of the virus, know how you and your church can help in your community and get support if you are isolated and need assistance. We pray that God will use this time of great uncertainty to glorify His name, and that He will use us to offer support to those around us.
Here are ideas of things that your church can do to minister to isolated people in your community //baptistsonmission.org/Coronavirus/Church-Response-Information/Ideas-of-Ways-You-Can-Help
In the attachments and video in the link below, we offer some great resources for your church of things you can do to help prevent the spread of the virus, find schools in your county that are serving food to children, handle food and sanitation correctly so that you protect your volunteers and the people that you are serving, and more. //baptistsonmission.org/Coronavirus/Church-Response-Information/Lots-of-Resources-for-Your-Church
Is Your Church Willing to Help? We are asking you to help us prepare should we need to develop a network of churches across the state to minister to those who are isolated by the coronavirus or whose source of food has been interrupted by the crisis (i.e. Children who usually receive free meals at schools, elderly who are isolated may need someone to drop off food or get a prescription filled and left at the door). If you have a church kitchen that could be used if needed, or if you are willing to help in other ways, please complete the form below. //baptistsonmission.org/Coronavirus/Church-Response-Information/Is-Your-Church-Willing-to-Help
In the link below, we offer some simple suggestions to help prevent the spread of the virus. //baptistsonmission.org/Coronavirus/Protect-Yourself-and-Others
Here are ways that we are trying to give support for those who are isolated or unable to leave their home. //baptistsonmission.org/Coronavirus/If-You-Are-Isolated
Esther 4:14 “And who knows but that you have come to your position for such a time as this?”
AN OPPORTUNITY TO HELP:
A service and ministry opportunity led by Galatia Baptist to help the residents and staff at Pine Forest Rest Home.
As I am sure you know the coronavirus has caused many problems for our friends at Pine Forest. Because of the infection, several of their employees have opted to stay home from work.This has left them with just 3 workers to cover 24 hours of care, resulting in the medical staff having to do all of the cleaning and cooking as well as their normal responsibilities. Along with this, they are working extremely long hours and are growing very weary. We are trying to help them through this difficult time by preparing meals for the residence and staff. We are asking families (to respect the need for social distancing) to prepare a meal that can feed 21 people and deliver it to the church. I am personally delivering these meals to limit contact with the virus.
We are covering as many meals as we can, but we are asking for help from the other churches in West Chowan. If there are any families who would be willing to help us meet this need please have them call the [Galatia] church office at (252) 585-1174 between the hours of 9am-2pm or my cell phone (252) 326-0362 after 2pm to sign up to bring a meal. We are also accepting monetary donation to help with the cost.
Thank you for your care.
Grace and Peace,
Pastor, Galatia Baptist Church
To stay updated on Baptist on Mission's hurricane relief efforts, visit their website below:
For frequent updates, visit BoM's Facebook page.
Rebuild Centers are OPEN for Day Volunteers
We are taking every possible precaution to ensure the safety of our volunteers and of those with whom we have contact. Beginning this week, we have limited volunteers to serve only as day volunteers with no overnight guests. This means we will send out small teams of volunteers to continue to work in homes damaged by Hurricane Florence. There are many things that do not require volunteers to work in close quarters. Skilled volunteers who have time away from closed businesses could be enormously helpful at this time. Survivors of Florence have been out of their homes for 1-1/2 years now. With God's help we can make great progress during this time of transition. Volunteers can register at: https://baptistsonmission.org/Mission-Projects/By-Mission-Type/Disaster-Relief/Hurricane-Florence.
Hurricane Florence Relief: Get Involved!
Urgent Need in the Bladen Association!
The WCBA Disaster Relief team is coordinating an effort to assist the Bladen Association with Florence recovery. Bladen Baptist Association is in desperate need of mission teams to help in the rebuilding of homes across their association. Only a few teams from West Chowan have visited to help since the storm last September.
Please consider putting a team together to help meet these urgent needs!
If you can partner, please contact David Foster at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 252-532-5977.
Click HERE for info on 2020 National Mission Trip Opportunities.
(3/19/20): This could be a season during which we can shine the light of Christ in a more obvious way than at any time in recent history. As God leads, perhaps your churches can make Operation Inasmuch type projects a priority for the next few months. Of course, avoid projects that would create large groups or force close contact for extended periods. However, there could be many things we can do to serve our communities: yardwork, delivering food or meals and leaving them on the porch, making phone calls to residents of care facilities, and more. We trust and support the decisions your churches make, but we do encourage them to follow God's direction in how they can serve. https://baptistsonmission.org/Mission-Projects/North-Carolina/Operation-Inasmuch
Visit NC Baptist Aging Ministry's website for more details on upcoming events.
Click the logo to see more upcoming opportunities for missions and training from the NC Baptist State Convention.
Summer 2020 Schedule (click on the date to register)
"Living Out Biblical Essentials Everyday"
June 1, 2020 @ 10:30am: Pastor Fellowship with special guest Dennis Conner (lunch provided)
July 18, 2020: Annual Pastor and Family Cookout (catering by Mrs. Betty Drake); a great time for our pastors and their families to come together for a great time of fellowship. Cut off date for registration is July 15.
|Join us each Monday morning at 9:00 at the MRC for our weekly time of prayer!|
Catch up on the latest news through the West Chowan Newsletter. WCBA publishes the newsletter each month. It can be viewed here or you can subscribe to our email list and have it delivered directly to your email.
|May 26, 2020
As I sit considering the content I should include in this newsletter article, it occurred to me to reflect a bit over the last couple of months and look forward to what the next few months have in store for us. So, as we reflect, I am struck by how dire everything seemed and how serious a thing COVID – 19 was in the beginning. (read more)