June 25, 2020

Family,

We have not been having church 24/7 in the past months, but we have been having church, doing church and being the church every day of the week.

Over the years, you may have heard me express my hope that there would be a worship service or Bible study gathering under the banner of LABC everyday, Sunday – Saturday. In the era of COVID-19, it has happened via Zoom! There is worship and Bible study on Sunday, the LABC Youth Group meets on Monday, No Soup, But Study meets on Tuesday, there is prayer and Bible study on Wednesday morning, Together in Spirit gathers on Thursday evening, A Time To Connect (or a justice-themed vigil) happens on Friday, and A Time to Connect connects on Saturday. The experiences offered are rich, varied, insightful, hopeful and healing. I certainly hope you are part of at least one of them. If you would like more information or need some help in deciding which might speak to you most directly, I urge you to reach out to Pastor Carolyn, Pastor Allison or me.

One of the opportunities that has been particularly meaningful to me has been the Monday night youth gathering. Over the years I have been fairly well acquainted with most of our young people but have not been directly involved in teaching and leading them. The online format on Monday evenings has given me the opportunity to engage at a different level, and I am grateful.

The structure of the meetings is very basic. Jesus Portillo opens with puns and jokes. I lead a short Bible study, Pastor Carolyn talks with the kids about what is going on in their lives (what they are worried about, what they are praying for, what they are celebrating) and Sheila Sims closes by praying for them. Our teens are an impressive group, their faith is real, their abilities are many and their care for their families, their church and their world is real. I hope that something like this will continue when we are no longer sheltering in place.

Our “Re-opening Our Buildings” Task Force continues to meet. Keep following the Midweek Message Daily Updates for word about when we will start doing more things in person. Until then Stand Strong and Hold On.

Peace,
Jim H.