Hello FLC family,
After prayerful consideration and careful review of the local Bradley County COVID-19 statistics there is a favorable downward trend in the critical numbers of affected persons. Assuming this trend continues downward, the Elders are preparing to resume “in house” worship services on Sunday October 18, 2020, The Festival of St. Luke, the Evangelist, excluding Sunday school. Keep in mind there will be specific criteria for those in attendance and also there will be alternatives for anyone who chooses not to enter the sanctuary at that time. We will communicate to all members very soon as to what the criteria will be. In the meantime, drive-through Service of the Sacrament will continue for Sunday, October 4th and 11th. The Elders ask that all of you continue to pray for the good health of members of First Lutheran and all our neighbors in Bradley County.
Board of Elders
Hello FLC family,
Below is a letter from Kert Stokes written September 22nd.
"Keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord." Romans 12:11
It can be tough at times to maintain a spiritual fervor, especially when
we are unable to lean on one another while worshiping together. The
support we gain while together under one roof is an important aspect of
our traditional worship service. COVID-19 has forced us to rethink and
alter our ability to worship together. The virus forced us to close our
doors to traditional worship and provide an alternative by creating a
drive-thru communion with taped sermons. This was not an easy decision
to make. There were many dissenting opinions and tough discussions.
Ultimately, our church leaders were forced to weigh the physical safety
of the congregation and followed governmental guidelines. A considerable
portion of our congregation can be placed in the high-risk category of
this virus. This is not to be taken lightly. With a national death toll
of nearly 200,000, we have seen several local churches where the virus
has struck and spread like wildfire - leading to the deaths of church
members. We have learned a considerable amount about this virus over the
last few months. Each month our Elders meet with Pastor Seaton and
discuss what options are best for our congregation. They weigh the
current virus statistics for the nation and our local community. They
also review guidelines issued by the Governor's Office and consider the
sentiments of our congregation. Each month the Elders' decision is
brought to the Church Council where it is discussed further. Everyone
involved, the Elders, the Council and the Pastor take the issue very
seriously. We all want to open the doors. We all want to worship
together. We all want to ensure the safety of each of our congregant
members. At this point I cannot guarantee when the doors will open
again, only that we do not foresee the alternate worship schedule
continuing indefinitely. I will say that we ask for your prayers. Pray
for those with the burden of the heart, that God will allow the right
decision, at the right time. Pray for our church. Pray that our members
show support for the Elders and the Pastor during these difficult times.
Pray that our members can rest in the assurance that our church is not
just a building. As important as it is to worship together, the church
consists of "a people belonging to God," - 1 Peter 2:9. I ask for your
perseverance and your understanding."
May God bless you and keep you,