A Word From Your Church
May 22, 2020
For more information and resources go to our website tbcraleigh.com
Our Most Recent Update by Dr. Jeff Roberts
Dear Church Family,
This past week our state moved into Phase 2 of our COVID-19 response. I rejoice with others who are able to open their businesses and who can enjoy some of the activities we could not enjoy in the past few months. I am prayerful that through this phase we will continue to be aware of our actions and habits that will not only protect us but others as we continue to respond to the Coronavirus.
In this Phase 2, churches are exempt from the government recommendations. Although we can meet, due to several factors we believe the best choice is to wait until the current Phase 2 ends. This is due to several reasons. First, although churches are exempt, there is still a strong recommendation that gatherings over 10 people not occur inside. Second, in our recent survey, only one third of the congregation indicated it was currently comfortable in returning to worship. In fact, many comments indicated that our membership would delay returning to a large group meeting. Third, the restrictions related to worship would mean a worship experience that is very limited. Considering these factors, our worship team feels that our best way forward is to wait until this Phase is complete. It would be our hope that at that time more of our congregation would be ready to return to worship on our campus.
Our Advisory Team, which was appointed as a team from the Trustees, adopted the following mission statement.
“Because we love our community of faith we will seek to move forward by minimizing risks and trusting our congregation to act responsibly.”
Out of this mission statement we have come to several recommendations. Let me share them with you.
We must be responsible for others. We are reminded by the Apostle Paul that we should not look only to our interests but also to the interests of others. We are constantly told to submit to one another and to put the other before self. Our “People Team” has developed recommendations and our Trustees have approved these. These recommendations are what we are going to ask anyone who enters the building, for any reason in the foreseeable future, to do. These recommendations can be found in the newsletter as well as online. The heart of the recommendations includes three important matters.
1. There is a health self-screening guide that we ask all to honestly adhere to. This list of health questions concerns your risk of exposure and your risk of exposing others. The guide will be posted on the entrance doors to the church as well as on the website. We encourage all to look at this screen before entering the building.
2. We are asking everyone who enters to wear a mask while in the building. This is another way that you can help everyone feel comfortable in gathering for worship and other activities. Remember, the mask may protect you but most of all it protects others who may have higher risks. If you do not have a mask, we have cotton masks that will be available at the entrance doors that have been made by a wonderful group of volunteers in the church.
3. Social distance when on campus. Our sanctuary and other rooms that will be utilized will be used with the goal of social distancing when we are on campus. This obviously means we are going to have to be flexible when it comes to room use.
We are currently planning to begin in person worship on June 28. We hope that as we move through Phase 2 we will be able to offer worship in person on this date. Our teams and committees will be working toward this goal. We will plan worship opportunities that will ensure our ability to social distance and to observe the “people team’s” recommendations.
But what about… Yes, these first steps leave us with a lot of matters still to be decided. Let me address some of those questions.
What about Sunday School? Our Sunday School is the backbone of our church. We value our relationships and discipleship we receive in these small groups. Your Sunday School Class may need to adjust its time for virtual meeting. We are so excited that in many situations, classes are having better participation than they were attendance. This is wonderful. We encourage you to continue your online presence. Our Sunday School Council is meeting to design a plan for meeting in person and options for classes.
What about Children and Youth? Children and Youth ministry is one of the hardest parts of ministry to restart. Helping keep our children and students safe is one of our greatest concerns. Our Children’s Ministry is going to be meeting with our “People Team” in helping us make plans for the restarting of ETC and other children’s ministries. We are enlisting the input of experts on these matters. Our goal is to adopt the best practices we can as we begin. In addition, our Student Ministry is seeking to discover creative ways to meet.
When will the office be open? We plan to re-open the office for office hours on June 1. However, we ask that you limit your visit to the campus and office to limit exposure risk to our support staff. Our staff will work in a staggered schedule through Phase 2. As we have stated above, all of the recommendations for entry will need to be followed by staff and any visitors to the building.
There are of course other matters that I have not addressed, but these are the important steps we are taking to return to various ministries and programs. I cannot express my gratitude to our leadership and to our congregation in this time. You have been faithful and patient as we seek to do this in a way that honors our Advisory Team’s mission statement. We are minimizing risk and we are trusting each other as we continue to be the church in this difficult time.
How to Give to Trinity Baptist Church:
- Online: tbcraleigh.com/give
- Mail: Trinity Baptist Church PO Box 97368 Raleigh, NC 27624
- Bank Draft or Other Options: Call Jan Brown 919-787-3740 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Today’s Devotion by Ms. Rebekah Gordon
My nephew turned one a few months ago. He is just beginning to walk and run and boy, does he move around. He crawls under chairs, pulls up on wobbly tables, walks into doors, climbs the stairs, and attempts to fling himself off of the couch at any given moment. He is a disaster waiting to happen. A very cute disaster.
When I watch him, I always have to be on high alert. If I look away for even a few moments, he pulls all the snacks out of the pantry or somehow makes it to the second story of the house, even with the baby gate up at the bottom of the stairs. I have to stay vigilant just to keep little bug safe.
When he goes to sleep, I peek in every so often to check on him. His parents even have a little camera to look in on his crib. If they hear crying, they can monitor through a cell phone if has gone back to sleep.
When the Israelites finally leave Egypt, God keeps a close watch over them. We are told it is “a night of vigil” for the Lord. To keep “vigil” means to keep awake and keep watch. It is often associated with times of prayer and remembrance.
The God of Israel is nurturing, protective, and watchful like a mother (or aunt) watching her son. The Lord is like a warm shelter, a safe place in times of uncertainty and fear.
The Israelites are uncertain about what their future holds.
My nephew is fearful after he bumps his head.
We are in a unique time, that holds many questions.
God may not intervene to change all of our problems, to take away the virus, or pain, or fear. But throughout it all, our God keeps vigil, watching over us in love.
Consider: What is causing you fear or uncertainty right now?
Pray: God, keep watch over me. Keep watch over my family, my community, my flock. Protect us as we journey through uncertainty.
How Can I Help My Neighbor in Need?
Donate and Volunteer with our missions partners!
Create Your Own Project!
- There are needs and there are gifts all around us. Your unique giftedness and calling has a purpose. We encourage you to connect with one of our ministry partners and be creative in how you are able to join hands with one another as you join hands with God in God’s mission of Love.
North Raleigh Ministries
- NRM is asking for our seamstresses to help by making masks for the volunteers. Fabric is available at NRM for these projects. Contact Lydia for supplies.
- Food donations can be brought to the ROC entrance at Trinity and placed in bins anytime any day.
Raleigh Rescue Mission
- Encouraging notes to residents can be mailed to “Raleigh Rescue Resident” at PO Box 27391 Raleigh, NC 27611 or emailed to: VirginiaG@raleighrescue.org who will distribute them within RRM.
- Food: breakfast food (eggs, bacon, sausage, cereal, pancake mix, syrup, etc), Ground Beef/Turkey, Pasta. Plastic products (forks, spoons, knives) & napkins.
- Supplies: Sanitization (wipes, Lysol, hand sanitizer), Baby needs (diapers, baby wipes, formula)
- Food and supply donations can be dropped off at 314 E Hargett Street.
- Please pray for these ladies and this pandemic as well as our continued ability to give these women the assistance they need to succeed.
- Donate Food Lion gift cards for groceries. Mail to: Redirection-NC at PO. Box 20231 Raleigh, NC 27619
Welcome House Community Network
- Donations of $50 gift cards for food security purposes to Food Lion, Walmart, or a Visa Gift Card. Mail these to Trinity Baptist Church c/o Rev. Lydia Tatum PO Box 97368 Raleigh, NC 27624
- Snail mail ‘Welcome’ encouragements to our guest family of seven and ‘Praying for you’ cards and letters to Mujib, our house host and interpreter.
- The Welcome House mailing address is 4420 Leadmine Road, Raleigh, NC 27612.
Note: the ways to respond and give change almost daily as the COVID-19 situation changes. Please be sure to check back at tbcraleigh.com for the most up-to-date information.