My Wesleyan Church family,
This week has been for me, as it probably has been for you, a balancing act between challenge and calm. Every day, I’m interacting with brothers and sisters in Christ and am so thankful for the fruit of the Spirit abundantly evident in this time of great concern and uncertainty.
A lot has happened quickly. On Monday, I shared a brief update. I end this week by reaching out once again.
Today, at noon, I held my first weekly prayer time. I invite you to join me every Friday at noon (Eastern Time) for less than 15 minutes as we, together, focus on intercession.
In the past few days, through technology, I’ve connected with our General Board, our district superintendents and our Wesleyan Headquarters team. They love you, are praying for you and are working tirelessly to resource you as you navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. I encourage you to explore this COVID-19 hub, a collection of financial, technical and spiritual resources that will continue to be updated.
Two decisions were made today by the General Board in response to COVID-19. The first is to postpone General Conference until 2021. I ask for your patience as we continue working out logistics.
The second decision is to partner with districts as they steward church assessments. Partnership details will be shared by each superintendent with their district. Ensuring the functioning of local church and community ministry is a top priority.
You are wisely following and modeling the guidance of our elected officials and health experts. Every one of us who lives within their guidelines participates in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and protects those most vulnerable among us. In this season, “loving our neighbor as ourselves” means a willingness to limit our typical activities so others may be safe and well.
I celebrate the way our pastors and congregants are being courageous and creative. You are “making the most of the opportunity” to check in with those who may be isolated, being a person of peace in the midst of a storm and offering a hope that transcends the current crisis.
I hear multiple stories of how technology is being maximized, how churches are calling each of their members to pray with them, how new ways of gathering (such as borrowing the practices, and, in some cases, even the facilities of drive-in theatres to hold drive-in church), how parents are leading families in devotions. The list goes on.
New ways of presenting the Good News and new ways of connecting with others — this is Kingdom work!
To quote Peter Moore, district superintendent of the Atlantic District, “We are not victims of our circumstance, but we are stewards of our response.”
Through the Spirit’s empowerment you are stewarding well this moment in history so that God receives glory.
General Superintendent of The Wesleyan Church