East End Baptist Church exists to walk with Jesus and take as many people with us as we can.
June 2, 2020
Dear East End Church Family,
Well, the time has come for us to get back together as a church family. We will have our re-gathering with live, in-person worship services Sunday, June 7. Our services will be at 9 AM and 11 AM. We still will not have Sunday School or other services, but we will have the two services.
To answer some questions:
1. Why two services? This allows us to spread out the number of people who join us. We have taken half of the chairs out of the sanctuary to keep the physical distancing needed to help deter the spread of COVID-19. Also, in time, we want to see both services grow and have them as ministry options.
2. Do I need to wear a face covering? Yes, you are strongly encouraged to wear a face covering as you enter, leave, and interact with others at the church. You do not have to wear one while you participate in the worship service through singing, praying, listening, but we ask you to wear one coming and going. Unless you are under 2-years-old! Then the doctors say it’s not just bad, it’s really bad and should never happen. So, no babies in face coverings.
3. Will the nursery be open? Yes, the rooms for the nursery will be open, but NO, there will not be nursery workers or children’s church. You can take a child in your household (under 5, let’s be reasonable) to one of those rooms if they need a break from the service.
4. Will the restrooms be open? Yes, and we are programming the service to run less than an hour to reduce the need to utilize them.
5. What else do I need to know? You need to know that:
· All entry and exit will be through the front doors, by the covered drop-off. No other doors will be opened or are to be unlocked. Signs will remind you not to unlock and use those doors.
· There will be hand sanitizer just inside the sanctuary. Please use it. Please.
· If you are sick, please stay home and join us via livestream on the church Facebook page.
· Instructions about giving are in the bulletin.
· Our door greeters will hold the doors open or prop them open to reduce touching of surfaces, reducing disease spread.
· Please do most of your visiting outside, where the air can more easily circulate.
A few other notes about regathering as a church family: some folks aren’t ready yet to take the chance of being out. Others have been advised by doctors to stay home. Some of you were ready to be back a month or two ago. Please be patient with each other.
Eventually, there will be a timeline for adding more events and activities to the church calendar. For the time being, all of those are dates “to be determined” based on participation, interest, and health guidelines.
Please remember to call or email with your questions. My phone number and email address are on the bulletin and here: 501-888-2210 or email@example.com
We will need volunteers to help with a quick cleanup between services. We also need volunteers for video streaming and some other help with A/V, especially as we go to two services.
There is a lot happening in our world today, and I look forward to seeing our church re-gathered in prayer, worship, and the Word of God as we look to the future.
See you Sunday!
May 2020 Dear Members of East End Baptist Church, Here we are in May, three months after most of us first heard of “CoronaVirus” and “COVID-19.” At this point, we have almost been “online-only” as many Sundays as we were live and in-person. It has been longer than anticipated at the beginning, though we are fortunate in Arkansas to already be discussing restarting many activities—there are some states where the health officials intend to restrict gatherings to fewer than 50 people at least until late fall! Our situation is this: after praying and waiting and evaluating the guidance from both the state health department and other medical advisors, the pastor, Church Council, and deacons of East End Baptist Church have decided that we will return to meeting in-person as a church on Sunday, June 7 . There are some important notes to go with this: 1. We will meet with two worship services: 9 AM and 11 AM. These services will be planned as identical services and executed as close to the same as possible. I will not, however, commit to tripping over my own two feet in the 11 AM service just because I did in the 9 AM. 2. We will not meet for evening services yet. 3. We will not have small groups yet . There will be no Sunday School or other Bible studies. 4. If you feel unsafe about gathering, please do not feel compelled to come yet. We are starting back to in-person services for those who are comfortable taking part. 5. We will continue to live-stream the service, but we will move the streaming time to 9 AM . And, if something goes wrong, we will stream the 11 AM. 6. Those who choose to attend will enter only through the front doors of the church by the covered drop-off. No other entrances to the church will be unlocked. Even if you have a key, please use the front doors only. 7. Entering the sanctuary, you will find hand sanitizer. Please use it. 8. We will not physically pass the plate to collect an offering, but there will be two lock boxes inside the sanctuary where you may place your offerings. 9. If you have had a fever within 48 hours of church time, if you have a persistent cough without a known medical reason (some of you have COPD, your cough isn’t from COVID and we know it), or have been around someone who is confirmed as COVID-positive, you must refrain from attendance. This includes if your fever responded to medication: you should be fever-free, without medication, before Friday night. 10. The balcony will be restricted for only the A/V team to minimize extra noise on the live stream. 11. No childcare or children’s church will be conducted, but the nursery rooms will be available if you need to take a child in your household out for a break. Several rooms will be available so that each household may use a separate room. 12. The service will be intended to run for less than an hour to help parents as well as meet other needs for participation. What do we do until then? Great question! As we move through the next three Sundays, I would encourage you to reach out to your Sunday School class or other circles within the church and consider gathering in groups of 10 or fewer to participate in live-streamed worship. Now is a good time to start rebuilding that time together. Looking ahead, we have some plans as a church about adding back Sunday School and Wednesday nights, but at the moment, flexibility is a critical part of the plan. Rather than put dates out that then change, we will share that information as we get close to it. Waiting with you, Doug Hibbard, Pastor April 2, 2020 Update: Well, it's now the first of April, and time to make some decisions regarding our church's response to COVID-19. However, first you should go here and listen to/remember some of these songs. Worship isn't over or stopped by any pandemic. Now, on to the business at hand: The ongoing guidance from federal health officials strongly suggests that we should not have in-person services through the month of April. We will have NO ACTIVITIES in the buildings of East End Baptist Church through April 30. We will continue to livestream our services. Sunday Morning and Wednesday night are being streamed from the sanctuary, and Sunday night will continue to be live from the living room of my house. At present, all services are streamed on FacebookLive at www.facebook.com/eebcar . We are working on improving the technology used which may allow us to stream without needing a Facebook account. For those who desire to maintain regular giving during this time, there are some options. The first is to send in your giving through the US mail. The second is to use the online giving page here: www.eebcar.com/give . You can also contact the office during Brooke's working hours: Monday-Tuesday 9-4, Wednesday-Thursday 12-3, to ask about other options. Please remember to keep in touch with each other and to make contact with Doug or one of the deacons if there are ways we can help you as a church. I'm praying for all of you daily. Please keep each other in your prayers. Pastor Doug March 30, 2020 Update: Well, it's the end of the initial 15 days of physical distancing 'requested' by the President, and now the CDC has extended that guideline through the end of April. We're looking at what this means for us as a church and our life together. For right now, it means this: Wednesday, April 1, will be online-only. Also, all activities outside of regular worship are canceled and that is until further notice: until we are live and in-person on Sundays, assume that anything else on the calendar is canceled or postponed until after the directives from the state health department clear social events of more than 10 people. We will have additional information about Sunday services in April by the end of this week. Doug Good morning! It's Thursday, March 19, 2020, and here's a brief, written update on where we are as a church. After prayerful consideration, we are moving East End Baptist Church services to an online-only format for the rest of the month. That means: both Sunday March 22 and March 29 and Wednesday March 25 will be done via video. All other events, activities, outings, gatherings, are canceled. We are doing this to participate with the guidelines of the health departments of the state and nation, and out of concern for health in our area. The church office remains open its typical hours, and you can still call the numbers on the bulletin if you need something outside of those hours. Our intention is to provide a livestreamed worship service on Sunday mornings and the Wednesday night. Sunday nights, Doug will do a live video Bible study. How can you help? First, spread the word to your fellow church members. Some may need some help with the technology. Help them if you can. Second, the guidance is about groups over 10. If you are healthy and want to host a small fellowship (UNDER 10), then do so. Third, pray for those who are in isolation right now. Use the opportunity to reach out. Don't sit and stare at your phone, wishing someone would call you. Call them. The lines run both ways. You can find our livestreamed services here on Facebook . If you "like" that page and ask for notifications, it will remind you of services going live.
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