I’m sure you are aware that Michigan is experiencing a surge in COVID infections, and COVID related quarantines. It is hitting Ionia county and Portland especially hard. Personally it has taken its toll on my own family, having four kids in quarantine over the last month, and I’ve spoken to many of our church members who have been affected in many ways. We have several in our body whose family members are recovering from COVID, with varying degrees of success. Many of you are tired and worn out from the health, financial, and relational toll it has taken on you and your family. I want you to know that the pastors and leaders of epic are praying for you on a regular basis. We think and pray often about the weight you are under, and how this pandemic has complicated your life.
Our elder team met last night to discuss the precautions and restrictions that our state and local governments are putting into place, and how it affects the direction of epic. Our discussion centered around our desire to care for you and for our community, as well as our desire to respect the local effort to limit the spread of COVID in our city. It’s out of that desire, that we have made the decision to again suspend all in-person gatherings of epic community church for the time being. This includes our Sunday morning gatherings, our Xplode youth ministry, and all small and discipleship groups. Sunday morning gatherings will continue virtually at 10:15am either on our Facebook Page, or our YouTube channel. We recommend all small and discipleship groups move to a virtual format like Zoom, or Google Meets. Our Xplode ministry leaders are working on alternatives to in-person meetings and will share those plans soon.
We have been down this road before and realize that this situation is less than ideal. I do believe that discipleship and relationships happen best face to face. But this is only for a season. In the meantime we will remember that church is not a building to meet in, or a service we attend. We are the church. We are a group of Jesus followers who have an allegiance to King Jesus, and a mission to spread the message of His Kingdom to all nations, baptizing them and teaching them to obey everything He commands. We are on the front lines of that mission everyday of our lives, and every day of our lives, we are the church. So in lieu of us meeting I implore you be on the frontlines. If we’re going to serve all nations, we have to start with your neighbors, and co-workers, and classmates. In the midst of a worsening pandemic in Ionia County, be a voice of healing and hope. Be the church.
Download the epic app for more ways to stay connected in this time and to stay up to date with what’s happening. I look forward to gathering with you virtually on Facebook or YouTube soon.
With much love,