In-Person ReGathering Update

FOXWORTH FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH – REGATHERING PLAN

Dear Foxworth First,

On Sunday, March 15, we made the decision to forego in-person services during the COVID-19 virus pandemic.  This was a decision based on the situation at that time.  We certainly did not know, then, that it would be many weeks before we could meet in person again.  During this time, we were blessed with the opportunity to meet in different ways.  Technology, even with all the difficulty that goes along with it, has been a blessing to us as we have gathered electronically.

The course of this outbreak is not over, but I believe based on the information we now have that it is time to plan a gradual, responsible, and safety-conscious plan for regathering as the church at Foxworth First.  We will do so cautiously while trusting the LORD every step of the way.  We will begin this process this Sunday, May 24, 2020 with a morning celebration at 10 a.m.

As we have learned, the situation is fluid.  Every date and time and activity is subject to change.  I am committed to constantly monitoring current conditions in order to best lead under the leadership of the Holy Spirit.  It could be possible that we have to delay or revert back to online, only, services.  I pray that is not the case, and that we can progressively move through this regathering plan.

As we do so, please keep the following in mind:

Personal Responsibility:  Each person has a responsibility to look out for the welfare of themselves and others.  If you suspect that you or a member of your family have symptoms, please stay home until the recommended “self-quarantine” period had expired and/or testing has revealed that you are negative for COVID-19.  Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus.  People with these symptoms or combination of symptoms may have COVID-19 (taken from the CDC website, https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html )

  • Cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell
  • This list is not all possible symptoms.  Other less common symptoms have been reported, including gastrointestinal symptoms like nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.

Appropriate Social Distancing:  Since the standard is 6 feet for appropriate social distancing, we will utilize that standard in calculating the distance between family units in pews, worship leaders, and all volunteers and staff.

Discourage Personal Contact:  We will discontinue meet and greet times in worship, maintain social distancing, and refrain from personal contact between individuals who do not reside in the same home.

Clean & Clean & Clean:  Protocols will be implemented to reduce the spread of the virus on campus.

Worship services/meetings/activities:  We will continue to provide livestreaming services as an option for gathering to worship.  Initially, there will be very limited meetings or activities that take place on campus (classrooms will not be available for you to use or will be available on a limited basis during the first 2 steps of our regathering plan).

Some may have questions as to why we are moving forward in this way.  I realize this.  I sympathize with your position.

Some feel strongly that all of this is not enough.  I understand your concern, and I encourage you to take the steps you are led to take for you and your family as you seek the LORD’s direction in prayer.  For yourself and/or your family, that may mean making the decision not to gather at this time.  I understand, and we respect your decision.

Others feel as though we are being too cautious and should simply fully regather.  I understand your concern, too, and I desire to be together, again, with no restrictions.  However, I believe that the precautions we will take are the way we should proceed.

Regardless of your mindset, I am asking you to do something for me:

              I humbly ask you to follow my leadership, and pray for me as I lead.

We can disagree.  Let’s do so, agreeably. 

I may be wrong.  I know that is true, but I assure you I have prayerfully considered each move I’ve made during this time.  It doesn’t mean I’m right.  It means I’m confident in moving forward the way I believe the LORD has directed.

I love you, church, and I am greatly looking forward to being able to worship together with you – even as we stay 6 feet apart!

I’m honored to serve HIM alongside you!

 

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