,Churches across the U.S. were hit hard because of Covid-19. A year ago March 2020, when the “Shelter at Home” orders were issued, churches closed their doors and ministry stopped for many.
Rick Warren recently observed, “COVID revealed a fundamental weakness in the Church. Most churches only have one purpose: worship. And if you take worship away, you’ve got nothing. They’re in a hurry to get back to worship because that’s all they’ve got.”
While worship services are vital, of equal or actually even great importance is the action a church takes following worship. As Warren points out, if all a church has is worship there is nothing left to do when the church cannot meet together to worship.
Even through crisis, such as we experienced in 2020, the mission of the church must go forward.
One CEF Dallas partner church that kept taking action during Covid was Northside Baptist Church in Carrollton. Northside’s mission statement is “to help ordinary people experience extraordinary living through the power and love of Jesus Christ.” One way to ‘experience extraordinary living’ is to keep ‘ordinary people’ involved in the mission.
Northside has been reaching out, through safe and social distanced monthly events, to the children who participate in their Good News Clubs (to learn more about our club ministry click here) and to families in the surrounding area of their adopted school – Good Elementary. To help accomplish this, Northside put to good use the information CEF Dallas provided through our Bless Every Home partnership.
In January they flooded the Good News Club kids with encouraging mailings. In February they took Valentine gift bags to their adopted school to distribute to parents picking up their children. In March they did a food drive-thru which was a great success. Over 50 volunteers participated in this outreach. In partnership with a local food bank, Northside members handed out 250 boxes containing 52 meals in each.
In April, Northside plans to host an open-air Good News Club for the children of Good Elementary. Using a movie screen and speakers, they plan to include all the club elements (Bible story, memory verse, songs) they learned through their CEF training. They will do a lesson on Jesus to teach the children the real meaning of Easter.
For May, Northside Baptist has a unique idea for Mother’s Day. An elderly woman at the church bequeathed her costume jewelry (over 300 pieces) to the women’s group at church. The plan is to hand these pieces in small gift boxes to each child at the school to give to their mom. Due to favor they developed with Good Elementary school administration, they are allowed on campus to give handouts.
And, Northside is looking to the future! They hope to return to in person, after school, Good News Clubs when the school semester starts again for the Fall. Due to the wonderful experience they’ve had, they have more members ready to serve as Good News Club volunteers and get trained for club ministry.
In the time of crisis, the Church must be the “shining city on a hill” to make known the love of God and share the Good News. We thank God for churches like Northside Baptist Church and the others we know who sought ways to continued ministry despite COVID. We would love to hear how your church continued ministry.