As of today restrictions on places of worship have been lifted and congregations are once again allowed to sing. There are, of course, conditions on this “high risk” activity: masks must be worn by those over the age of 12 and the number of people must be within 4m2.
Even with these conditions this is good news. It’s an indicator that there have been no local cases for almost forty days and that our observation of the restrictions has been effective. Praise God!
I’m looking forward to hearing a congregation sing together again. There is one caveat that I wanted to raise (and have included in the Friday update too). On 4m2 we can have 100 people in the auditorium. If, as has been the case since we returned to onsite services, we are under that number we’ll belt ‘em out (masked up of course!). If, however, we have more than that number of people we will not sing. Either way it sounds great; lots of people in the building or congregational singing. Win-win.
As we were thinking about it as a staff team we felt it was more important to welcome everyone who comes to worship than it was to sing. Worship is much more than singing and while I fully expect we’ll be able to sing this Sunday onsite I wanted to remind us of our priorities as a community of faith – to see people hear and respond to the invitation of God.
So bring your masks and prepare to sing your hearts out – but keep in mind that our priority is to welcome all!
See you onsite or online this Sunday!
Marc Rader | Senior Pastor
I’m delighted to announce that Belinda Lakelin has joined our staff team on a one-year contract as a Plan A consultant (one day a week). Last year I interviewed Belinda in one of our on-line services about Plan A: The Great Commission for Every Believer; a set of five evangelism principles (rather than techniques or models). The five principles are: Growing (as disciples of Jesus ourselves), Knowing (people who don’t know Jesus), Sowing (planting little seeds in the lives of those we Know and looking for interest), Rowing (doing this with others), and Showing Up (persevering). We also produced a Plan A Life Group Resource which I know many of our Life Groups have done (and I’ve only heard good feedback!).
When all the staff changes took place at the end of last year I reached out to Belinda to see if she might be interested in helping us figure out how to better implement these principles in our lives as individuals and a community of faith. She was and the CLT agreed to bring her on for 2021. She will be helping us assess how we’re going and provide some help to become more effective in our evangelism. This, of course, fits with our theme for the year “Go… make disciples” and is a critical part of our vision “To see lives changed by Jesus.”
She will be in the office on Mondays from now until the end of the year. We’ll be introducing her to you more formally in the weeks to come and she will be part of our Sunday services from time to time. She regularly speaks at other churches as part of her role with the Baptist Association and she is part of Dapto Anglican Church.
Marc Rader | Senior Pastor