Update: 17th March 2020

 

Dear Church,

We expect that this will be the first of many bulletins as part of our communication plan in response to the Covid 19 pandemic.

Within this bulletin:

  • assurance from the SCF’s Elders & Directors concerning our response.
  • details of the actions we are taking, including
  • notification that The Bridge will be closed for all groups, effective from 09:00 on Wednesday 18 March 2020: including
  • there will NOT be a meeting on Sunday 22 March 2020; but,
  • that we the SCF Church Family need to continue to support one another and our neighbours.
  • some practical suggestions for staying in contact.

 

SCF’s Elders & Directors:

As Elders & Directors we have been actively monitoring the UK Government’s advice re Covid 19 and implementing actions in alignment with that advice. Last week Anna, Ben and Dave Shore were asked to take responsibility for defining and coordinating the actions that we, the SCF Church Family, need to take.

 

UK Government advice:

The advice given by the UK Government yesterday (16Mar20) in response to the Coronavirus (Covid 19 virus) outbreak was unprecedented during peacetime. Anna, Ben and David met yesterday (16Mar20) evening to discern what SCFs response should be.

 

Activities at The Bridge

The advice from the Government is clear that none essential travel and social gatherings should be avoided. Therefore we are putting all activities that are run from The Bridge on hold effective from 09:00 on Wednesday 18 March 2020. These activities include: Bereavement Support group; LAH; Stay N Play, Community Lunch; and Babies at The Bridge, and all other mid-week groups operating from The Bridge as well as our Sunday morning meetings (there will NOT be a meeting on Sunday 22Mar20)

 

Our role as The SCF Church Family:

Our role as followers of Jesus Christ, and as members of The SCF Church family does not stop. We have always made a distinction between ‘The Church Family’ and ‘The Bridge’. The SCF Church Family is who we are and The Bridge is where we meet. The doors to The Bridge will be ‘closed’ for a while but, the doors to Solihull Christian Fellowship, and the role we play in the community, will not.

Immediate actions:

Over the next 24hrs as a Leadership Team we will be praying and planning how we can continue to function as the Church Family. In the meantime, please do the following:

  • “Like us” or “follow us” on Facebook we are https://www.facebook.com/SolihullChristianFellowship/ This may become the quickest and simplest way to communicate
  • Keep checking your email – Mailchimp will be an important tool for communication
  • Our website is www.scfchurch.org.uk
  • think about who you know in the Church Family that may be feeling isolated – perhaps they haven’t got access to electronic media or are self-isolating. Please take the initiative to reach out to them in appropriate ways.
  • prayerfully consider your neighbours and other contacts who may be feeling isolated. Ask God to reveal how you may be “salt & light” in your community at this time. Now is the time to bring light into the darkness.
  • use the opportunities that this pandemic is providing to bring the Hope of the Gospel into people’s lives.

 

Practical steps:

Many of us are in home groups. At times like this they become important ways to connect, keeping in contact with one another; this is a time when we need to reach out to one another for support, companionship and connection. We live in a time when technology enables us to do this whilst still continuing to adhere to the UK government’s advice. Telephone calls, messaging, FaceTime or Skype become invaluable tools to reach out to people and offer support; prayers, conversation and help in any way you can. Pick up an SCF directory, think about those who live alone, may be in a high-risk groups and send them a message.

If you regularly attend Solihull Christian Fellowship but are not in a home group then please call into the office and leave your name and contact details, including telephone number and email. This will enable us to ensure we send you communication updates. We may be able to place you in a ‘virtual group’ for connection and support.

 

What Next:

There is a lot to do over the next 24-48hrs and we will be communicating with group leaders and all church members more over the next few days. Our mission to share the Good News, the love of Jesus has not changed, there is still a mission, an assignment and a task to live out as followers of Jesus. Let’s rise up and show the world how The Church is different.

God Bless you all

Ben Lees
Lead Pastor
Solihull Christian Fellowship