3-12-20 Coronavirus update

Greetings, Reach family,

What a week it’s been. I wanted to briefly update you on what is happening in the life of our church as we navigate the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on our community. Please read this message in its entirety so you are equipped for the next several Sundays. 

WHAT HAPPENED THIS WEEK?

As you might have heard, Governor Inslee announced at a press conference this week that gatherings of 250+ people are prohibited from taking place, at least through March. This ordinance works in conjunction with Snohomish County's request that groups of 50+ consider suspending, and that everyone practice "social distancing" for the time being. This absolutely affects growing faith communities like ours, especially as we gear up to adopt some new families into our church.

In addition, the Everett School District has suspended all events taking place in their facilities, including our Sunday morning gatherings. Since we plan on shifting our services to the armory downtown (our new, permanent home) on Easter, it makes no sense to maintain the contract moving forward.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR US?

This means a couple things for us. First, given our upcoming transition into a permanent facility, we are officially no longer a “mobile” church. I imagine that might take a moment to compute for many of you, as it did me. Allow yourself to feel that, to process being done at View Ridge; remind yourself of all the good things God has done in/through us this last 2 years; prepare to be ultra-flexible in the coming weeks.

Secondly, given the Governor’s mandate, as well as our county’s requests, our church will be taking our services online-only for the foreseeable future. In light of this reality, our staff and team leads will be working hard to resource you and your group to thrive in the midst of drastic change to our normal rhythms.

HOW CAN I STAY CONNECTED?

  • Join us online this Sunday: You'll be able to stream a special Sunday service, as well as access various resources to help equip you at reacheverett.cc/online. Please don't consider this season as "time off" from your participation. God always does incredible things in his people during trials just like this one. Don't miss the chance to be present with your church family as we seek His presence together - even from afar.
  • Be the church with friends. If you and your friends are healthy, consider gathering together in smaller groups in a home to watch the service! We had a few groups do that last weekend and they reported the time to be quite fruitful.
  • Stay tethered to our social media. We'll be doing our best to post regular updates on Facebook and Instagram. If you're not following those platforms, be sure to do so. They will offer the most current updates.
  • Consider alternative options for your group: If you feel unsettled about meeting with your group/DNA in person, consider connecting over technology. Apps like Marco Polo are great for video updates at your leisure. Google Meet or Zoom are useful for video conferencing with multiple parties. You could also keep it simple and open a group text thread.
  • Look for opportunities to serve your neighbor: Part of a neighborhood HOA? Check to see if anyone has needs. Know a teacher or someone in the medical world? Ask how you can support them. Let's think creatively on how we might serve those around us. By all means, let us know if you have ideas we could present to our church as well. Email ideas to emily@reacheverett.cc.

Staying interconnected will be paramount as we combat feelings of isolation, as well as potential spiritual atrophy. We believe God is in control, but we’ll need to also do our part to tap into the people resources he’s helped us cultivate in our family.

Let's Trust God, Above All.

I would also encourage you to pray without ceasing in the weeks ahead. Rather than turning a blind eye or isolating in fear, let‘s take our requests to God. Present your fears at his feet. Lift up prayers on behalf of the vulnerable. Seek his face. Perhaps God might make us a more purified people as we weather this storm together. In the words of the Apostle Paul:

“Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7 CSB)

Lastly, our leaders are available if you are wanting to talk through any of your questions or concerns. Please reach out to any member of our team as needs surface, and let us know how we can love and support you in the days and weeks to come. You can find everyone's email addresses on our team page.

All glory to God who promises to never leave us nor forsake us!

Sean Gasperetti
Lead Pastor
sean@reacheverett.cc

P.S. If you wouldn't mind, please spread the word about these changes to those you know are part of Reach (or those from the Foundation Church community).

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