Dear friends and members of Adrian FUMC,
The World Health Organization has recently declared the Coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic, and last night Governor Whitmer declared a state of emergency for Michigan on account of the coronavirus. In addition, beginning as early as this coming Monday, many Michigan colleges and universities are requiring all classes to be taught online. There seems to be a recognition this is one of those situations where the best offense is a good defense.
After conversation at today’s staff meeting and a brief communication with church leaders, we have made the decision to suspend all Sunday worship services and all church events and meetings through March 31. At that point in time, we will reevaluate how to move forward.
In the absence of a worship service, each Sunday morning I will be uploading to the church website and to our Facebook page a video of me delivering my sermon. If you wish to see the video (or read it), you may go to www.adrianfumc.org, chose the “Worship” tab –> ‘Sermons.’ Follow the appropriate links to the sermon you wish to hear/read.
Please know that we are doing this for the sake of precaution. As of today, there are no coronavirus confirmations in Adrian. But because it it likely that it will eventually make its way throughout the state, we are choosing to be proactively cautious early-on so as to minimize the spread of the virus.
At this point in time, it’s our intention to keep the office open during our regular hours. However, we are asking that anyone who comes into the building to immediately wash their hands. I will be available for pastoral care needs as they arise.
As a reminder, these are the recommended precautions that everybody is being encouraged to follow on a regular basis, even if they feel fine and healthy.
- Wash your hands with soap and warm water multiple times throughout the day for at least 20 seconds. This is for the protection of both you and others.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
- When you sneeze, cover your nose and mouth with a tissue (and throw it away), or into your elbow, not your hands.
- Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects
- Drink plenty of fludids
- Get plenty of sleep and eat a well-balanced diet
If you experience the common signs of the respiratory flu (fever, cough, achy body, difficulty breathing), please call your doctor and explain your symptoms. Avoid personal contact with other people, including touching or shaking hands.
A colleague of mine offered this advice and encouragement to her congregation, and I pass it along to you: As Christ-followers, we are called to love our neighbors and, in this case, loving others means staying home. This is a challenging time and we will face it together with faith, courage, and love. Check in with our older church members with a phone call or note, and with older neighbors to see if there’s anything you can do to help. Send cards to people you learn are sick. People need their church family in times of crisis, and we can continue to be God’s hands and feet to each other as this story unfolds.
As we move through the coming weeks, let’s keep in mind something John Wesley said: “The best of all is that God is with us!” The fact is, God will be with us even through COVID-19.
Blessings to you all,