AACRC Worship and Programming Update – Week of March 16
As things continue to change as we respond to our deepening health crisis, we want to share a few things with you as the Ann Arbor Christian Reformed Church. This is a LONG email. Please take the time to read it because there is a lot here.
First. All church ministries, programs, and building use–including worship, are cancelled until further notice.
Second. There will be a weekly communication that goes out that will keep us all up-to-date on the latest information pertaining to all things AACRC, including one later this week.
Lastly, while we are not able to regularly be together here at 1717 Broadway, we are still committed to answering the call of Christ on our lives by worshiping together, growing together, and serving together. See information below.
We also know that our Christian witness can be practiced in our neighborhoods and with the people that God puts us in close proximity to.
Grace and peace to you!
May the Lord be with you until we meet again!
Worship With Us
Christian worship begins with gathering; so what does it mean to worship when—for the sake of loving our neighbor—we need to practice social distancing? This was the question that we faced last week.
Our goal is to provide flexible, participatory, in-home services that will center us around Christ. We want a service that can be enacted in the home and not merely watched. If engaged, such a service should encourage, disciple, and provide space to praise, lament and intercede. This Sunday, we will follow a similar pattern: some songs, a simple liturgy, and a video reflection. The link to this material will be shared in our weekly email, coming later this week.
Grow With Us
A life lived as a disciple of Christ is a life dedicating to be a forever learner. We are called into a life where we are shaped more and more into the kingdom people God has called us to be. Here are a couple ways we can continue to grow together even while we keep a safe distance from one another.
House Groups: Have some time on your hands and want to join a House Group? We’re happy to add you right now! Contact Ross Weener. We’ll be reaching out to our House Group facilitators this week and see what electronic options there are to finish our three sessions of reading and learning together.
We Wonder podcast: This podcast has daily prayers, and a weekly bible lesson through lent. It is good for people of all ages to engage. You can find the podcast HERE.
Read: Find a favorite author or theologian that helps you grow in your faith. Reread that favorite book, or venture into new territory. If you don’t know where to start give one of your pastors an email, they’d love to give you a recommendation!
Serve With Us
As we continue to worship and grow in our faith we are reminded, as Pastor Noah shared with us in his homily (you can watch it HERE), that we are the body of Christ! As Christ’s body, it is our call to move close to those in need as the threat of sickness or danger comes near. So, the deacons have prepared a list of ways we can serve in this time and challenge us to work tougher for the kingdom in the following ways:
Continue our tithes and offerings: The AACRC supports many organizations and missionaries that are being directly affected by this pandemic and it is through our offerings and tithes that we can continue to support ourselves and the ministries we are in partnership with. As our church office hours will be variable, we encourage you to mail a check or you can use the My Well Giving app. Thank you for continuing to support the good work of God through the Ann Arbor Christian Reformed Church.
Care for one another: COVID-19 affects those over 60 and those with health concerns most critically. Therefore, some have needed to distance themselves from others in this time. We’re looking for people willing to make a grocery run, pick up a prescription, or run an essential errand for those who are most at risk. You can sign up to be a helper by adding your name to THIS LIST. If you have a need you would like assistance with, please contact a pastor or your elder.
Rotating Shelter: While we have cancelled all other programming, the need for Rotating Shelter assistance continues to be significant. Many of our current volunteers are over 60 and may need to remove themselves from consideration as volunteers. Therefore, we are asking that those who are able to serve step forward and fill this significant need. We have been in contact with the Shelter Association of Washtenaw County and they are providing safety measures for their host sites as well as COVID-19 screening for their guests. Please consider signing up HERE!
Hope Clinic: Hope Clinic is committed to staying open during this time. Please consider their requests HERE. (Hope has two immediate needs: masks for the Dental Clinic and hand sanitizer for entrances, waiting rooms and the food program.) and drop off the items or volunteer your time to help those most affected by stoppages of school and work. If you are unable to personally get out but would like to make a cash donation, that is also welcome at this time!
Finally, the Red Cross is in need of blood as many blood drives have been cancelled. If you feel up to it, please contact the Red Cross and please consider donating blood to help with the shortage.