Naringal Baptist Church
The Light of Christ to the rural community
Announcement (Click to expand)
Please see below the letter on our current status from church leadership from Wednesday the 18th of March.
Good evening church family
Earlier this evening, our leaders gathered together to discuss our ongoing approach to the current crisis that is sweeping across our nation. The threat of the coronavirus must be taken seriously and, after the events of today with directions from the government and the Baptist Union of Victoria, we will be postponing all Sunday services indefinitely. Please see an excerpt from an email from the BUV which was sent out this morning (Wednesday).
This morning, the Prime Minister announced that non-essential indoor gatherings of more than 100 people are now banned as the country responds to the coronavirus pandemic. (This number could be lowered at any time in the near future).
An indoor gathering refers to a gathering within a single enclosed area (i.e. an area, room or premises that is or are substantially enclosed by a roof and walls, regardless of whether the roof or walls or any part of them are permanent, temporary, open or closed). Schools, universities, airports, public transport, medical and emergency services facilities, aged care homes, jails, courts, parliaments, supermarkets and many workplaces are exempted.
The BUV recommends that churches meet only for essential activities (less than 100 people) and encourage discipleship through small groups. Please make sure that if you do hold any gatherings, you apply social distancing and hygiene practices as recommended by the Australian Government :
This includes being able to maintain a distance of 1.5 metres (Now 2 meters) between attendees
Hand hygiene products and suitable waste receptacles need to be available, with frequent cleaning and waste disposal
The pre-existing ban restricting mass outdoor gatherings to 500 people will remain in place.
Currently, gatherings of 100 people or more are not permitted, and any venues hosting gatherings under 100 people need to facilitate a distance of 1.5m (Now 2 meters) between attendees. Be prepared for that number to be lowered at any time.
These steps will be difficult and disappointing for us all but we must do our part in seeking to minimise the spread of the coronavirus within our church family at Naringal as well as the broader community. Obviously, there are many things to consider during this time. Below is a list of changes to our normal church-life routine:
Sunday services are postponed indefinitely. Re-commencement of normal services is unknown.
Sermons will continue, but will be online. These will be available each Sunday morning from 10:30am on the church website, www.naringalchurch.org
Newsletters will continue to go out each week.
We can’t stop home groups from meeting but advise that attendees adhere to social distancing protocols and good hygiene routines (as regulated by the government)
Working bee this Saturday. The plan is to still go ahead with this. Times from 9am - 1pm. Most jobs are outside, but anyone working inside will need to maintain a distance of 1.5 metres from others. Please contact Sue Loxton for more details.
Church security measures will be put into place for the duration of the postponements.
Other cancellations include; church cleaning, family camp at Kangaroobie, Easter Arts Festival, Heart of Grace Dance Camp, Easter services, youth group and Wednesday night prayer meetings.
Offerings can continue via direct debit: BSB 704922, Acc No 100013332. Those who don’t have online banking can post cheques to Heather at Mal & Leanne’s house.
Rightnow Media is an excellent resource (especially now) for some wonderful studies and teachings. Let Matt Jellie know if you need any help accessing this resource.
Obviously we encourage everyone to continue to pray, read your bibles, sing songs of praise, etc in your homes.
Communion will continue to happen on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of each month, from home. Mal will lead this, but everyone will need to supply their own bread and grape juice.
Any church related announcements can continue to be sent to Matt who will communicate these on the website each Sunday.
Endeavor to stay connected through home groups (if you’re not currently in one, this could be your chance to join. Contact Matt for more info), the church website and Facebook page, messenger groups, zoom conferences, etc.
What a great opportunity this presents to us to ‘Be the light of Christ to our rural community. Ask yourself, ‘What can I do for my community during this time?’ Phone calls, checking in on others (especially the elderly), delivering supplies/groceries to others, etc, etc.
Remember that we are called to be strong and courageous, to not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus!!
Please feel free to ring Malcolm, Matt or the elders with any concerns.
Yours in Christ
Mal, Matt and the Elders
God is Chosen by Israel
Joshua 24:23-24(NIV): “Now then,” said Joshua, “throw away the foreign gods that are among you and yield your hearts to the Lord, the God of Israel.” And the people said to Joshua, “We will serve the Lord our God and obey him.”
As Joshua prepared to die, he challenged the Israelites to choose to serve God. He instructed them to:
- Remember God’s faithfulness v2-11, Hebrews 13:8
- Remember God’s provision v12-13, James 1:17
- Choose to serve God v14-15, Matthew 16:24-26
In this current environment of fear and uncertainty, we can trust God, we can rest in his love, and we can choose to serve him. He is “our shelter in the time of storm.”
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.
- Why did Joshua remind Israel of their faith journey? Psalm 103:1-5
- How important is it to know of God’s faithfulness to us in Jesus? Romans 5:8
- The Israelites received what they hadn’t worked for? (V12-13). What does this tell us about God’s grace? Ephesians 2:8-9
- Joshua challenges Israel to choose to serve God. (V14-15). He then reminds them of his personal choice (as for me and my house). How important are Christian role models? Hebrews 12:1-2