Full statement on temporary transition to online gatherings
Resources for you right now
We have set up Church (re)Defined, a special page to provide relevant information during this time of transition for Metropolitan. Visit this page for a special message from Pastor John, online gathering content, service opportunities, and more.
COVID-19 Response and Plan
Where are we Today?
To say that the last few days have been surreal and unprecedented is an understatement. Our ministry models have been flipped upside down. It seems like with every new update from the CDC, Washington, and the state or local governments we are having to reassess how we carry out our ministry to the community. Currently, CDC recommendations are that we avoid gatherings of 10 or more people. In light of these recommendations, Metropolitan will respond in the following ways.
Redefining our Gatherings
Online tools like FaceTime have given us great abilities to connect to others without being in person. Hebrews 10:25 reminds us that even in times like this, we are not to neglect gathering together. In the past few days, we’ve had to rethink how we can continue to do church in spite of restrictions on the size of our gathering. We are excited about learning new ways to join our church family together through online tools, social media, website posts, and small pieces of content designed to equip us to interact like never before. Content will be located on a page on our website called “Church Redefined,” so you won’t ever miss content like pastoral prayers, devotionals, Bible studies, etc. Know that we as a staff will be happy to help you navigate if you need help. Remember that we are all growing together as a church!
Gathering on Sunday Mornings will Transition to an Online Experience
Our weekly worship service helps ground us and define us as believers in Christ. On Sunday mornings, our worship services will be livecast at 10:00 am on our website. We will have music, prayer, biblical instruction, and interaction. Our intention is that you view this as a household with your family, loved ones, or roommates. We will have discussion questions that will help you better process what God is doing in this unusual time and how to entrust ourselves to Him as His children and as His bride.
We should all see the remarkable potential and opportunity with this. We encourage you to use this time to better connect with one another and hope that this becomes a tool for a unique season of spiritual growth for our entire church. Any material we publish will be easy to share with friends. Frankly, we have never been part of a time when our world will be so ready for gospel truth.
How do we Access this Material?
We have a dedicated page on our website that will provide information, content, announcements, etc. related to changes Metropolitan is experiencing right now. We will also utilize our various social media platforms in the next few weeks to continually connect with you. Be sure to follow our church’s public Facebook page and join the Metropolitan Family & Friends Facebook Group. Our commitment is to provide a steady stream of content from our pastors and ministry leaders so you can remain connected to the church body.
How do we Fulfill our Mission while Quarantined?
The church is the church whether it is gathered or it is scattered. Our core values will guide us in how we continue to live out Jesus’ mission for our church. As His people, we are committed to “loving our ever-changing world with never-changing truth and grace.” Our expectation is that we will actually grow as a church as God continues to refine us and our thinking about life and ministry.
- God’s Word. We will still teach truth with regularity as we transition our teaching times to virtual gatherings. For example, Pastor John’s Wednesday Bible study will be led via Zoom.
- Grace. The love of Christ will be shown in unusual and God-honoring ways during this season. For example, our church wants to be the hands and feet of Jesus to those who are immunocompromised, elderly, or at-risk in our church. Please let us know if you need anything at this time. We have volunteers who want to serve you!
- Gathering. We will not neglect meeting together. We live in a wonderful day and age when technology is readily available to mediate our gatherings.
- Growing. God is in complete control. Remember that God is the author and perfecter of our salvation. We will ALL be stretched in unusual ways in this season, and the church has grown in times when circumstances would suggest otherwise. In the coming weeks, you will be contacted by a “shepherd” who will keep in touch with your household.
- Going. Our leadership will all be assigned a group of households to oversee and remain relationally connected with. In addition, we will provide you many ideas for how you can be a unique manifestation of the presence of Jesus to your neighborhood. Use this opportunity well!
What Must our Response be?
We must remain united as a church. We are all being reminded that our church is not defined by what we do, but rather who Jesus is and what He has done for us. Metropolitan Bible Church exists when we are both gathered and scattered. Jesus’ words should ever be before us: “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.” (John 14:1). Do not be troubled during this time. Rather, see it as a unique opportunity to live out your faith in Christ. He is all sufficient and worthy of all affections. Jesus is drawing us to Himself.
Know that you are loved and prayed for.
Pastor John and the Elders of Metropolitan Bible Church