Type content here...
UPDATE AS OF 3/20/2020:
As everyone now fully understands, these are unprecedented times. All of us are making changes and adjustments to our lifestyles as we adjust to the guidelines we have been given to socially distance ourselves and do what we can to help prevent the spread of the Coronavirus.
Our church staff and board have been reviewing our mission, vision, core values and ministry strategy and asking how we can continue to be the body of Christ and advance the mission of God as we fulfill our mission to “prayerfully connect people with Christ in community."
Today, we are reminded that the church is not a building. The church is the people of God, sent on the mission of God, sharing the gospel, making disciples, serving others and living lives of worship.
For the immediate future, we will not be gathering in person. We will be taking the following measures to continue to worship, stay connected, grow in Christ and worship Him.
We will meet online on Sundays at 10:30 AM and on Wednesdays at 6:30 PM. Our Sunday gathering will be around 45 minutes long and we will aim for a 30 minute gathering on Wednesdays. The platform for all of these will be Facebook Live. You can join the streams at facebook.com/conwaynazarene. You do not need to have a Facebook profile to access the live stream; it is open to anyone that would like to join. You are also able to share this stream and invited others, as well. We’ve had great success with our first two gatherings and are finding that although this isn’t our preferred, ideal, or familiar method of gathering, it has been successful in helping us continue to worship, grow in the Word, and interact with each other.
Groups (Discipleship Groups, Connnect Groups, Sunday School)
We are currently working with our discipleship groups, Sunday School, and Connect Groups to offer virtual group opportunities via a platform called Zoom. We do not know yet if this will be a viable option for all of our groups, but we are optimistic. If you are already a part of one of these groups, you should be hearing from your teacher/leader. If you are not currently a part of any existing groups, you can email Pastor Tim at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask to be added to a new forming online group.
Pastor Jackie has been working hard to continue our ministry to the children of our church. She will be communicating with parents and posting content for our kids and their families on the CN KIDS FACEBOOK page. If you are not already a member of that group, you can email Pastor Jackie at email@example.com to be added. This will require you to have a Facebook account.
Pastor Kent and our CN STUDENTS Intern, Caleb Bullington, have been exploring ways to connect with our students and allow them to stay in touch with each other. They have developed a CN Students GroupMe where Caleb will be sharing scripture and links to helpful resources. Caleb will also use this platform to encourage and pray for our middle school–high school students. A note to parents; our students may need your help accessing this and getting things set up. If you have questions or need help, please contact Pastor Kent at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We know that needs both in our church and in our community will be abundant in the days and weeks ahead. We are working hard to identify the needs that exist and do what we can to #closethegap and meet those needs. We are working on creating a form that can be submitted through our website for people in our congregation to request help. The same form is available for those who would like to lend a hand. This is not live yet, but will be soon at conwaynazarene.com/churchonline.
As this dynamic and complex situation continues to unfold, we anticipate that changes and adjustments may need to be made. If anything that we are doing seems ineffective or insufficent, we will do whatever we can to replace it with something different and better.
If you have ideas or suggestions we would love to hear them. If you have needs we would love to meet them. We deeply appreciate your flexibility as we discover new expressions of what it means to do church and how we go about doing ministry. Please keep our board and staff in your prayers as we do all we can to serve our church and community effectively.
Grace and Peace,
The CN Staff and Board
UPDATE AS OF 3/14/2020:
Dear Conway First Church of the Nazarene Family,
As good stewards of our own health and the health and safety of our church community, we feel it necessary to address the COVID-19 Virus that is now present in Arkansas. We recognize that many are concerned about the impact of this virus on their safety and well-being. We want to be wise in our response, while not creating unnecessary anxiety among those in our church and our community. Our highest concern is for those who are particularly vulnerable – those who may be elderly, immune deficient, or already unwell.
We are paying close attention to the recommendations from the CDC, state officials, and local officials and will be following any guidelines that are given from those organizations. If there are specific things that we can do to slow down the spread of this virus, we want to do it.
Here are the measures that we are taking as a community of faith:
1. We are implementing a NO HANDSHAKING POLICY for the foreseeable future. We understand that for some, physical contact such as hugging and shaking hands is a way of building community and relationships. Yet out of concern for the most vulnerable, please do not shake the hands of people at church.
2. We are encouraging everyone to WASH YOUR HANDS often and well, especially before and after worship or public gatherings.
3. For the time being, we WILL NOT be dismissing any worship services or special events. We encourage all of our church to continue being active members of our faith community. But if you feel unwell, or have had known contact with someone who has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, we encourage you to stay at home. We will continue to post Sunday’s sermon on our website on Monday afternoon. You can stream or download the message at conwaynazarene.com/media.
In the unlikely event that we must dismiss services due to recommendations from local officials, we will live stream a gathering on our Facebook page. We are exploring the option of livestreaming our services beginning on Sunday, March 15th. Those who do not feel comfortable gathering or leaving your home can join us online at Conway Nazarene and those who feel confident gathering in person can join us at 1501 Scott St. at 10:30 AM.
You always have the option to give online at conwaynazarene.com/giveor mail your tithes and offering to the church at:
PO BOX 687
Conway, AR 72033
4. For the immediate future, we are suspending The Table on Wednesday nights. We are currently planning to continue our Midweek gatherings for children, youth and adults. We were already planning on taking Wednesday, March 25 off for Spring Break.
Due to the rapidly developing nature of the news and information surrounding this virus, it is likely that there will be adjustments to our response based on the guidance of the leaders and organizations listed above. Please follow our regular communication channels including email, Facebook, Instagram and the website for the most recent updates and information.
Please pray for all of those who have been impacted by this virus, and their families.
As a body of faith, we are called to be the image of Christ, meaning that we must take steps to ensure the health and prosperity of the most vulnerable in our communities. Conway First Church of the Nazarene will continue to pursue this example in all that we do.
With much love,
Too often we have made our faith about preparing for death rather than learning to live like Christ. What if following Jesus has more to do with here and now than it does with what happens after we have breathed our last breath? It seems like Jesus and the writers of scripture had far more to say about the realities of the present than happenings of the future. Throughout this series, we will explore what the New Testament tells us about how we can live today in a way that honors God, makes a difference in our world, and helps those around us see Him and experience His dream for their lives.