Dear Church Family,

In consultation with our Health and Wellness Team, and with reports of coronavirus cases in Dallas County this week and the closing of Mesquite and surrounding area schools, our church will not have Sunday morning Bible study or an in-person worship service for Sunday March 15, or any mid-week activities for next week. We will determine plans for future Sundays as we assess the situation this week and following weeks.

This is a step beyond our previous plan, in which we stated we would cancel in-person services in the case of a general quarantine. There has not been a general quarantine issued by the city of Mesquite or Dallas County, our congregation is below the recommended number  (250) asked to cancel meetings, and no one in the congregation has been diagnosed with coronavirus or COVID-19 (the illness caused by coronavirus).  We took this additional step early in order to help limit the spread of coronavirus in Dallas County. Though most cases of COVID-19 are mild, we want to take extra precaution to protect our church members and those in our community who are at greater risk, such as those over age 85 and those with respiratory problems. Since those who have contracted the virus often do not show symptoms until days after contracting it, limiting exposure beforehand is a way to love one another, love our neighbors, and seek the good of the city. 

My family and I will record a time of worship tonight at our home, and that worship time will be uploaded to our church Youtube channel at 10:30 tomorrow morning, and will remain up with the collection of previous sermons. The link for the Youtube channel is: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCL-lF3bFMJxcH5NpbeCCBCA/videos    

Please consider giving your weekly offering online as well. There is a link at the bottom right on the church website where you can make your offering by clicking on “Donate’ and following the directions.  

If you or your family is in need of anything (prayer, encouragement, supplies) during this time, please do not hesitate to call. The church office will also be open this week during regular business hours if you have a need.  

This is a unique situation in our church, community, nation, and world. Our nation has declared a national emergency, and asked that tomorrow be a national day of prayer. I have good news for you – the church is uniquely equipped for unique situations, emergencies, and crises. We serve a God whose Holy Spirit connects believers across distance. We are commanded not to be afraid, for God is with us. We are commanded to look out not only for our own interests, but also the interests of others. I challenge you in this time to look for ways to encourage healthcare workers, government leaders, school leaders, and grocery store workers. Be a shining light in the midst of darkness, that the world may see the difference in the life of the Body of Christ. 

In Christ, 

Pastor Patrick 

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