Great News PCC!

Drive-In Church is Now IN Church Building!

May 15, 2020

Dear Church Family,

Early last month I had it in my mind that the target date to return to meetings was Mother’s Day, May 17th.  Yes you read that correctly, Mother’s Day, but I had assumed the wrong date for the holiday - it’s only a 110 year old holiday, maybe it will catch on someday and become like…the Black Friday for restaurants.  As I figure it, God must have been behind the date, because a lot of things had to fall into place to get us to this point.  I want to thank those of you who have been patient.  Yesterday, the last of the shipments arrived which allow us to put a plan into place.  Some things were easy, like arranging the chairs to accommodate social distancing.  Others required waiting for a company to spray a specially formatted disinfectant.  They showed up last week in their hazmat gear and sprayed the building.  The final hurdle arrived yesterday which was the final link in providing a sense of safety.

We are now set up with 98 chairs, set up in groups of two and groups of four.  There is a space of 6 feet between each group.  If you are a couple, or two who would be comfortable sitting together then there are those options.  There are groups of four for family units, or four people who would be comfortable sitting together.  We have two groups of five chairs for the two families who sometimes have five members.

We are also going to two services.  The first service will be at 9:00 and is designed for those who are most at risk and are more cautious about gathering together.  This will be a face mask only service, with strict social distancing guidelines.  Chase and I will be the only ones without face masks.  To reassure those gathering I was tested earlier this week for COVID-19 and should hear the results tomorrow.  I will have myself tested periodically to ease your minds.  Immediately after this service we will spray the bathrooms with the disinfectant which finally arrived yesterday.  I have ordered touchless hand sanitizer stations and infrared thermometers (touchless).  They have not arrived as of yet.  The thermometers will be used for the early service only as an extra measure of safety and comfort for those participating in it.  Obtaining supplies has been the major hurdle to gathering together. 

The second service will be at our normal time of 10:30.  This will allow us only about half an hour between services.  We ask those who come to the early service to quickly exit the building so that we may spray the disinfectant after each service.  We also ask those who arrive for the 10:30 to not enter until 10:15.  The second service is mask optional.  For this reason we ask that you honor the times.  Those more cautious have 15 minutes to leave first service, and those coming for second service can arrive up to 15 minutes early.  Handshakes and hugs are likely to happen at second service, but please, please – do not assume the other person you approach is on the same page as you.  Make sure you ask before hugging or shaking hands.  We have an unequal distribution of chairs set up in groups of four.  That is for those who are most likely to attend the second service.  Many couples would like to sit with their couple friends.

This still does not solve the concerns of everyone.  A few still prefer the extra safety of Drive-In Church and a few still feel safer at home.  We will continue streaming the 10:30 service for these folk.  All services are BYOC – Bring Your Own Coffee.  We will still not have Bible school, except online on Wednesday nights.  I will pre-record the Bible study and post it on both YouTube and Facebook.  I will also continue to do my daily devotionals on Facebook.  Soon, we will make a change in how we stream.  The website technology is confusing to some.  We have the ability to stream to YouTube Live on our YouTube channel.  I suspect this will be less confusing for many.

I remind you that this is but for a time. Thank you for your patience and continue in your patience as we will likely be tweaking all of this.  Please offer up praise too – not just for us meeting again, but for what God is accomplishing through all this.

1. We have garnered a lot of attention.  There is supposed to be a follow-up article in the newspaper to the one they did on us when we began Drive-In Church.


2. We have seen anywhere from three to ten times our Sunday morning audience watching our streaming service.


3. We have seen an increase in the number of visitors on Sunday morning.


4. Going to two services is an early blessing.  We will likely continue the second service after COVID measures cease.  Most church leaders agree that the easiest path to increasing attendance is adding services.  In the past, services were added AS the church grew, but it was discovered that multiple church services CAUSED church growth.


5. I had a young couple in my office today who expressed interest in checking us out.  We have developed a relationship and they are curious about us.  There are more stories like that.  Be ready to hear some more of those crazy wild “God is on the move” sort of stories in the coming weeks.

Luv Ya,

Rick

93 Bob Tollett Loop, Crossville, TN 38555, USA

(931) 210-5505

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