Faith Bible Fellowship Family,
03/20/20-#2 UPDATE: It is with love, care and much deliberation that we have made the hard decision to cancel our regular services until further notice. We will communicate via email and our website as soon as we can resume regular services, when we believe it will be safe for our congregation and community. We do not do this from a spirit of fear, but from a spirit of love and a sound mind. (2 Tim 1:7)
Why Cancel Onsite Services?
As you likely know already, federal guidelines caution us to avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people. Evidence shows that early action and social distancing significantly slows the growth curve of the coronavirus, which eases the load on health care systems and can have significant long-term impact on the health of our community. This is especially needed for Alaska, since we can no longer send our most critical patients to Seattle hospitals. We believe canceling events at this time is a way to submit to local authorities, show love for our neighbors, and protect those who are more vulnerable.
For future Sundays, we will be live streaming at 11 a.m. This technology is new to us, but we have dedicated volunteers working long hours to make this happen. Please go to our Vimeo Streaming page where you will find our live streams and previous events all on the same page. We are methodically expanding our capability as we gain experience with it, so stay tuned for additional live streamed event announcements.
This is the Faith Bible Fellowship Vimeo streaming page link HERE. Each stream is labelled with the date & description, so be sure to select the correct one.
All other regular gatherings at Faith are also canceled for the time being. We urge you to stay in communication with others from church, talk and pray with one another, and use the many communication channels technology affords us. We have a great opportunity to point people to God through faith and confidence in him. Our staff continues to explore ways we can demonstrate faithful witness in a time when people may be frightened, be in need of resources, become lonely, or even experience illness that may be severe.
How to Get Prayer and Help
If you or a friend or family member have COVID-19 symptoms, please let us know so we can be praying for you. Or if you need assistance as a result of this pandemic, please let us know. You can do that by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What’s to Come?
We simply don’t know. We will continue to monitor the situation so we can make timely decisions. We will be communicating more regularly through our website, so please bookmark and check that at least weekly. We will also be communicating regularly through our email prayer chain list.
It’s a privilege to be your pastors and elders in these days and we have every confidence that God is in control. Join us in praying that we would have an increased trust in this time and the gospel would spread greatly through the church’s witness.
Ethan, Josh, Dave, Brian, Paul and Keith
03-20-20 UPDATE: Our church elders & leaders are actively meeting & praying for guidance every day, then making decisions on how we will proceed at Faith Bible Fellowship Church in Big Lake, AK for the upcoming weeks gatherings. We have a dedicated technical team working to install and test a new streaming application to supplement/replace our typical “in-house” events, starting with our Sunday 11:00 AM service. Our plan is to provide these live or recorded streams directly up to our main church facebook group, this website and other social media sites, as we also learn how to deploy our streaming solution. We are praying there are no technical issues and that this streaming effort allows us all to continue growing in God’s word, maintain connections, loving and helping each other, sharing what we are thankful for and our struggles as a congregation.
As details surrounding the new coronavirus (COVID-19) are rapidly changing, we want to let you know our elders and deacons are monitoring the situation closely. We highly value gathering together for worship. We also are evaluating the situation daily with these three priorities in mind:
The safety of our environment and the health of those who gather here are very important to us. Following CDC guidelines, we are taking extra care in cleaning our facilities and ask for your help in the following:
- Please stay home if you are sick, particularly with upper respiratory symptoms or a fever, and avoid contact with others for at least 24 hours after you are fever-free.
- If you are at a higher risk of being affected by this virus, please use wisdom in deciding how you engage with church activities.
- Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly. We have ordered hand sanitizer stations, but it may be some time before supply can meet the demand.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Be mindful in the ways you greet one other, being safe while continuing to be gracious and friendly.
Links to additional resources:
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention – How to Protect Yourself
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention – Get Your Home Ready
- Alaska Department of Health & Social Services-Coronavirus
- We will continue to make sermons and information available on our website.
- As the situation evolves, we remain flexible. We are exploring options and making plans for continuing ministry should local officials ban large gatherings.
- As plans need to change we will continue to communicate.
- Audio sermons are available for download or listening HERE.
- Vimeo streaming page link HERE
- As we have been recently reminded from 1 Peter, we can remain confident that our hope is in Christ and our trust is in God’s loving hand in all things. Throughout history, Christians have taken on care of those suffering from disease and we have an opportunity to point people to God through faith and confidence in him.
- We continue to explore ways we can demonstrate faithful witness in a time when people may be frightened, be in need of resources, become lonely, or even experience illness that may be severe.
- We believe that through our relationships with others we can demonstrate compassion and mercy in ways that open doors for the gospel to be shared and heard.
Please pray for our leadership team and our church as we monitor this situation and respond in light of our priorities and mission. Please also pray for wisdom for those in leadership at city, state, and national levels as they respond to this outbreak in the coming months, knowing they are making weighty decisions as they seek to protect the health of our communities.