By now, we’re sure you’ve heard Governor Mike DeWine’s comments limiting gatherings of people due to the Coronavirus. He was certain to say that this does not mandate religious gatherings and churches in order to respect First Amendment rights, but it was recommended. Worship services, studies and activities will be suspended at The Sanctuary this week and possibly next week as well. We aren’t acting out of fear but out of concern and love for the body of Christ. Romans 13:10 reminds us, “Love does no harm to a neighbor” and 15:1, “We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves.”

I believe the application of those Scriptures in this current condition includes giving each other social space in order to help limit the potential transfer of the virus. As Christ followers we put the needs of others ahead of our own.

This is a unique time in our lives and our history and perhaps some of you may find yourself with more time on your hands than usual. Use it to spend some time outside, take a walk enjoying God’s creation. Spend time with your family, read a book, or meditate on some Scripture. Like this one from Psalm 91

 Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
    will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
    my God, in whom I trust.”

3 Surely he will save you
    from the fowler’s snare
    and from the deadly pestilence.
4 He will cover you with his feathers,
    and under his wings you will find refuge;
    his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
5 You will not fear the terror of night,
    nor the arrow that flies by day,
6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
    nor the plague that destroys at midday

While this affects our Sunday services and programming for the next few weeks, the church is by no means stopping ministry. During this time, we will continue to minister, pray, and be available to serve you and the community. We know there are those who are experiencing times of uncertainty, fear, and physical need and we will be continuing to address those needs in these coming weeks.

Our God is an awesome God,

Art Wiegand, Pastor