Greetings Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
During the past few months, I have begun each sermon on Sunday morning by saying, “Good Morning, Church!” And the usual response that I have received from you is “Good Morning!” or “Good Morning, Pastor!” We say it is a “Good Morning” because every day is a day of the Lord’s making, and a day where we are given opportunity as children of God to come together in fellowship around God’s Word. However, in recent days we have heard about the Coronavirus and its spread, and this has caused concern and panic among many people. Public and private institutions have closed, and social distancing has become the trend promoted by health experts and policy makers. While it is certainly good to take preventive measures in connection with this virus, I would encourage everyone to replace “panic” with “prayer.” For “panic” produces “paranoia”, but “prayer” produces “peace.”
Paul invites us, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” (Philippians 4:6). God also asks us to be wise, too (Proverbs 8:14). The Elders and I are prayerfully keeping watch regarding the latest coronavirus (Covid-19) developments and the latest CDC guidelines. We value your safety and health! As of this writing, it has been decided to cancel the church supper and worship service for Wednesday, March 18th. However, in the coming days we will determine whether or not to continue future services and educational activities at St. Andrew (beginning with Sunday, March 21st) during this time of social distancing. Please check in with the church website, (www.standrew-westbend.org) and your elder as we make further information available to you. I will also post updates on my own personal blog at jatvierkant.blogspot.com.
We ask that you take care of yourself and stay healthy with frequent handwashing and by keeping contact with others to a minimum. Also, we encourage you to stay home if you are feeling ill or experiencing symptoms of any illness. As we determine the status of worship and education at St. Andrew beyond this Wednesday, March 18th, we will keep you updated about the plans of the church. Feel free to contact me and your elder if you have any questions. Additionally, if you have any needs that the church can assist you with during this time (food and supplies, a ride to the doctor, a home visit from Pastor to bring communion, or even someone to talk to), please let us know. We are here to serve you.
Yours in Christ,
Pastor Jon Vierkant