Dear Southport Pres family,
We trust that this note finds you healthy and living in the full confidence that the Lord offers you.
As the last days seemed to sped up and the ‘temperature’ seems to be increasing, know that our prayer for you over the last days and hours has been that your “love may abound more and more with the knowledge and depth of insight so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ” (Phil 1:9-10). Our heart is for us, as God’s people, to respond knowledgeably and blamelessly to our local authorities, the CDC, and our Lord.
We also are praying for peace, remembering Paul’s words to “not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
As a church, we believe in the providence of God, the power of gathered ministry, even in the danger the exists today. In essence, we are working to faithfully navigate between presumption and paralysis in a way that brings glory to God and allows us to love one another well. As we wait to hear from President Trump, we wanted to take a moment and share with you how Southport Pres has updated our responding to this situation by answering the next three most common questions.
Is Southport Pres gathering for public worship?
No. Given the counsel of our health officials and the direction of Gov. Holcomb, we think it would be unwise to gather together for corporate worship. Our heart is to protect people and promote peace in our community,
What will happen on Sunday morning?
We believe in the power of ‘the gathering’ and see it as a gift from our God. When we gather, not only do we attempt to make great the name of Jesus, we are also rehearsing the Gospel with one another. In corporate worship we are reminded that our world is broken and dark and of the great hope that we can have because of the work of Jesus Christ to break the power over death. We speak of the goodness and favor of our God and celebrate the hope and assurance we can have in Him and Him alone.
Because of this, we are working diligently in an attempt to replicate our morning gathering…even as we are unable to gather in the same geographical spot. We will be sending an update once these details have been completed. We understand that this will bring a change to worship and are working hard to hold tight to what is sacred and hold everything else loosely.
What will happen next Sunday?
Quite simply, we don’t know. At this point, we are working hard to be nimble and responsive as each new circumstance and request materializes. As soon as we know, we will communicate that out to you.
Will all events at Southport Pres be canceled?
At this point (and who knows how long that will last), we have not canceled all our events. Each ministry area will be communicating out to ministry teams and participants on an individual event basis.
What do you do?
It’s crucial that in times of crisis, the church rises up as salt and light so that others can see the hope we profess.
Our days have become frightening for many as uncertainty continues to rule the day. Those who are weak and vulnerable, have become even more so. As God’s people, we have the opportunity to live out loud what we profess together. May we be a people we practice the great commandment to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind…and love your neighbor as yourself” (Mt 22:37-38).
This situation is so very fluid that it is difficult to know what tomorrow will hold, though we do know who holds tomorrow. Let us trust and move forward with faithfulness.
Rest assured, we will continue to monitor this situation and will be adjusting our approach accordingly. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Robert E. Hock