This video features a conference call held on March 18, 2020 with LCN leadership & Local Center leaders about how their churches are responding to the COVID-19 crisis. Special thanks to Ashley Hart for sharing knowledge and facts from a healthcare professional’s perspective. Nathan Cline and Andrew Hart lead a discussion that focused on four main points:
- Financial planning: Be proactive in anticipating how this health crisis is going to affect your church’s finances. Honestly evaluate your church’s status and how that would change if giving was cut by 30%, 50%, 70%. What would your church’s status look like if this continues for 8 weeks, 3 months, 5 months? Perhaps you and your leadership team need to make line item cuts or deduct an overall percentage from every department’s spending. Be honest and be prepared!
- Community response: How can your church respond to this crisis in a way that helps the community? This crisis prevents us from mobilizing corporately to aid the community so think of ways that your church members can help on an individual basis. Perhaps people can leave notes on their neighbors’ doors with personal contact info. Put together goody bags and encouraging notes for police officers, firefighters, and emergency medical technicians. Contact local school districts who need help in converting classes to online formats or delivering meals to underprivileged families. Evaluate the needs of your community and act within CDC guidelines to meet those needs.
- Community of believers: How can your church work to stay in touch with your members through this challenging time. Social distancing does not equate to spiritual isolation. Engage your church community through email, videos, social media posts, etc. Set up video conference calls for small groups where they can share and study God’s word. Record encouraging video messages – there is power in face-to-face interactions.
- Monday through Saturday: Many churches are currently focused on converting their Sunday services to an online format. Remember to also consider how your church members need to be encouraged throughout the week. As most people will be working from and staying at home, the need for daily encouragement is significant. Come up with a weekly schedule or outline of social media posts. Consider ways you can prepare your members throughout the week for Sunday’s gathering.
Most of all, remember that the body of Christ must be a beacon of hope, a voice of reason and a source of encouragement throughout this crisis. We are better together! Let us use this time to delve deeper into our calling to make disciples for Christ.