A Message from Our Pastor

 

Temple Family.

I am excited to announce that we have decided to resume on-campus services Sunday, June 14th @ 9:30a & 11:00a. We will have one more Sunday (this Sunday, the 7th) with Church @ Home offered online and then next Sunday (the 14th) and moving forward, we will offer church online and in person.

Things will look a little different at first as we re-gather:
 

  • We will not be offering Children’s Ministry for any ages initially (including Infant & Toddler Nurseries) until we get more feedback from you.

  • Services will be BYOC (Bring Your Own Coffee). We will not be serving coffee at first and our water fountains will be closed per the suggested guidelines of our Governor. We will have bottles of water available instead.

  • We are asking that you sit together as family units for now and leave two empty seats between you and another family unit on your row. We also plan to adjust our rows to allow for social distancing based on the feedback we get from you in our survey.

  • For the time being, we will not be passing the offering plates. There will be offering boxes placed at the back of the room.

  • There will be hand sanitizing stations throughout the facility and we have deep cleaned the auditorium, including the chairs, with products that are above and beyond even the CDC requirements.

  • For now, we will be removing the Bible and cards from underneath the seats.

  • When we offer communion, it will be disposable containers.

Now, please hear my heart on all this…
 

As I look at our culture these days, there have been very, very strong opinions being shared all over the map about how everyone should be making decisions about COVID-19. In most of those bold opinions, there has largely been an absence of grace and there has been an abundance of shame for anyone who disagrees with the opinions being shared.

As the Body of Christ, we desire to communicate better than that. We don’t pretend to be experts about any of this. We don’t pretend to be all-knowing. We don’t pretend that our opinions are the only ones that are right. Because the followers of Jesus don’t have to pretend. Through the work of Jesus in our lives, we desire to have a tone that sets people free from shame and one that demonstrates grace.

In an effort to display the Gospel of Jesus, here are our thoughts about gathering on-campus again:

  • If you do not feel comfortable coming back to worship on campus yet, there is no shame in that. We are working hard to be able to livestream our services so that you can join us online as we gather.

  • If you think we should have started meeting in-person sooner or maybe never should have stopped meeting in-person, there is no shame in having that opinion. We have sought the Lord and sought to walk in wisdom to the best of our ability in these uncharted waters.

  • If you desire to wear a mask when you return to campus, we will not shame you for that. We currently do not plan to require anyone to wear a mask, but you are more than welcome to do so if that makes you feel more comfortable.

  • If you want to wait a couple more weeks to see how things go in our area, we will not shame you for that.

  • If you want to ask someone if they want a hug or a handshake or a high five, we won’t shame you for that either.

  • We are not intending to shame you when we ask that if you are displaying symptoms of COVID-19, if you are running a fever, if you are immune compromised, or if you are at-risk, you please continue to worship with us online from your home.
     

I’m sure there will be more questions as we move forward, but we intend to walk through them with humility and grace. We love you and we can’t wait to see you!

I love you!

Pastor Doug