Highrock Churches Moving to Online Alternatives
March 12, 2020
This week we are reading about many things being cancelled out of an “abundance of caution.” But all 10 Highrock churches around Greater Boston will be switching to virtual services starting this Sunday for a different reason: an abundance of love.
During the pandemics that swept the Roman Empire during the 2nd and 3rd centuries, while civic leaders and even medical professionals fled for the countryside to protect themselves, Christians remained in the cities to care for the sick and dying. The resurrection of Jesus made these Christians unafraid to die, which freed them to love their neighbors sacrificially. This compassion inspired many people to become Christians and the Church grew exponentially!
When Bubonic Plague devastated Europe in the mid-1300s Christians demonstrated this same sacrificial love by choosing to remain and care for the sick rather than run to safety.
Such wonderful examples might encourage Christians today to continue meeting fearlessly despite threats from COVID-19. But we believe that today that same sacrificial love for our neighbors must take a different form.
Community containment efforts have failed. Now the best way to serve our most vulnerable neighbors is to slow the spread of this virus so that medical facilities and professionals are not overwhelmed by more patients than they can care for. We can do this by avoiding gatherings of more than 25 people.
While we will miss our regular gatherings, we wonder what new invitations God may be giving us in this season. Our staff team is exploring ways to connect virtually, including online Sunday services and many more new opportunities throughout the week.
In addition, we are looking into ways that we can serve those who are impacted by either the disruptions caused by COVID-19, or by the disease itself. We are currently in talks with community leaders and medical professionals to figure out if there are ways we can bless others in this difficult time.
Finally, we want to say THANK YOU to the many medical professionals, researchers, and community leaders who are on the front lines against this pandemic. If some of the rest of us have extra time at home over the next few weeks, let’s use some of it to pray for those who are working even harder to protect everyone else, and in many cases, facing much greater risks.
Pastor Dave Swaim on behalf of the Highrock Network of Churches