NEW SERVICE TIMES
Service times at Celebration will be 8, 9:30 & 11. (1 hour services), this will help us to be able to spread out more in each service. Please complete the survey to let us know which service you will most likely attend.
GOOD NEWS: IT’S TIME TO COME HOME!
Greetings Church! We have good news today: “It’s Time to Come Home!”
In March our leadership team chose to move our physical services online out of an abundance of love for our community and respect for the recommendations given by our local authorities. However as our community is beginning to open up, we believe it’s “time to come home!” According to PA guidelines, churches have a “religious exemption”, which means we can freely meet together. After much prayer and discussion, our Pastoral leadership team and Board have agreed that May 31st will be our first church service back together on campus. We are so excited about this! We want to assure you that we are taking extra precautions in preparing and cleaning the facility and making sure that certain social distance guidelines will be followed while on campus. God has been moving, and we are coming back believing that He will do greater things than we could imagine!
Here are some new updates:
- Service times: 8, 9:30 & 11. (1 hour services), this will help us to be able to spread out more in each service. Please complete the survey to let us know which service you will most likely attend.
- Services Online: Will continue and will be broadcast at 9:30 instead of 10:45 on our website livestream page and facebook live.
- Seating: During the summer months, our ushers will seat everyone respecting social distancing. The children will sit with their families during the service.
- Masks: Are encouraged but optional
- Greetings: We will welcome you without physical contact.
- Cleaning: Facility has been thoroughly cleaned and high touch surfaces will be wiped down in between services.
- Children’s Ministry: During the summer months, there will be no Sunday morning kid’s church or preschool classes. We will continue to offer our online kidLife services via Facebook. During the Sunday morning services, kid’s activity packets will be available for each child to take home.
- High Risk: If you are in the at risk category (age or underlying health concerns) please continue to worship online with us.
More from Pastor Mike: “No Judgement Zone!”
As the situation evolves, and more becomes known about COVID-19, we realize the threat is primarily significant for those who are physically vulnerable due to age or underlying health concerns. It has become clear that, statistically, healthy people do not normally experience serious complications from contracting COVID-19. Some have been reported, but experts agree the risk is low.
At the same time, we observe the following destructive trends in our society: suicide hotline calls are spiking, domestic abuse cases are spiking, alcohol sales are spiking, pornography use is spiking, addiction and depression is spiking, and news outlets report that divorce lawyers nationwide are ramping up for an anticipated flood of new filings following the lifting of ‘stay-home’ orders. We’ve come to the point that not gathering for worship and the expression of our communal faith is a greater risk to our community as a whole than gathering would be.
People, even Christians, are more lonely and isolated than ever. Christianity is a “one-another” faith. It is inherently a faith-system that cannot be fully practiced in isolation. God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit co-exist eternally in relationship and we are designed in His likeness. We are created to be together in community. Digital community has been a beneficial stop-gap, but it has not satisfied the intrinsic spiritual need that we have for gathering with other believers.
We are aware of the fact that COVID-19 is still a risk to certain members of our community and we encourage the vulnerable to stay home and participate in church online as long as necessary. Worshipping at a physical campus does not mean a Christian has more faith or courage, just like worshipping from home doesn’t make a Christian more careful or considerate of others. We’re not trying to prove anything except for how much we can love one another – even when our choices and opinions differ.
We are also aware that some might criticize our decision to meet again. The truth is that we care far more about stopping known devastation than we do about avoiding potential criticism. We want to save lives. We want to save marriages. We want to prevent the spread of abuse, addiction, depression, and suicide. At the same time, we also want to prevent the spread of COVID-19 which is why we’re voluntarily taking safety precautions beyond what is legally required. We’re not forcing anyone to gather for worship, and we’re still offering excellent-quality online ministry for those who need or want it.
Some people are not yet ready to return to normal life. That’s okay. Our church is here to lovingly lead our community back into the confidence to live their lives after a long season filled with fear and uncertainty. The threat of the virus isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, so we must adapt to it. Our goal isn’t to just continue surviving COVID-19, but to live lives that are fully thriving despite COVID-19.
We know that, for some time, church will look different while we practice spacing & sanitation safety measures. That’s okay. We’re flexible and adaptive. We’ve always taught that our preferences are secondary to our mission. Corporate worship gatherings were spiritually beneficial for multiple reasons before COVID-19, and they will continue to be just as beneficial even with distancing measures in place. Our purpose is to rescue lost people who are far from God and currently living one heartbeat away from an eternity in Hell. Our goal is to raise up strong, confident, life-long followers of Jesus Christ. Our methods might change, but the message remains.
We live in a world that has fully woken up to the fact that life is fragile. People are looking for solid truth to stand on now that they’ve experienced how easily jobs, markets, personal finances, and health can crumble. We’re here to tell the world that hope and life are found only in Christ. That’s why we exist: to help people find and follow Jesus. Our doors are open for the person at the end of his or her rope and seeking a life-line. This isn’t about us. Everything we do is for God’s glory and so that people far from God can experience new life in Jesus!