COVID-19 Plan & Resources

Josh Miles / March 19, 2020

** Updated as of 05.01.20 **

This situation is quite fluid, friends, and the information we’re providing should always be assumed as “FOR NOW” statements. We’ll be updating this post as we have more information. This post is to inform you of the steps we’re taking in the future for resuming in-person gatherings, as well as our plan for the time being to prioritize a healthy environment, and we ask you to join us in this effort.

Hello Redemption Peoria,

We truly thank the Lord for your love, flexibility, creativity, generosity, and hearts of gratitude during this season. We find ourselves thinking about, praying for, and longing to be in community with you all – our church family.  Let’s pray that this is a time for us to grow in gratitude and faithfulness as God’s people living and serving together in all of life, not limited to buildings or corporate gatherings. 

We will communicate as often as needed to help bring clarity and direction about how we can grow, learn, thrive, and serve faithfully.  Here are a few words of direction and encouragement for this season ahead.

DOES REDEMPTION HAVE A PLAN IN PLACE FOR RESUMING IN-PERSON GATHERINGS?

The answer, as of May 1, 2020 is yes. You can read about that HERE. 

HOW WILL WE GATHER TOGETHER FOR CORPORATE WORSHIP THIS MONTH? 

For the foreseeable future we will continue what we started; worshiping together in and through our households. We will do the work of the people (liturgy) together as we always do, albeit in a scattered fashion. You’ll find these liturgies, R\Kids resources, and our sermons through our Redemption Peoria Youtube Page, as well as our website through our weekly posts on Sundays.

We need to work hard to stay in touch with each other. We are a church family, and we need to stay connected via phone, text, email, or any other kind of communication. The social distancing we’re participating in means physical distancing and not isolation. Zoom (how-to video in link) is one way to connect with multiple people, and Watch2gether is a unique way to watch YouTube content (our current sermon videos, for example) at the same time, where you can discuss what you’re seeing/hearing. There are other ways as well, of course (Facetime, Google Hangout, Instagram Live, etc.).

We gratefully ask you to continue to generously give financially — and to do it online. God still wants us all to trust him financially, and our mission isn’t stopping — even if some components are paused. If anything, it’s more active than ever. If you normally give in person, please consider giving online during this season. We know that many of you are being negatively impacted by the financial downturn caused by the uncertainty around the spread of this virus so you must cut expenses. However, our goal during this time of uncertainty is to maintain our financial commitment to care for our church family, our community and our ministry partners around the world. You may even have to cut or reduce your giving to Redemption Church. We understand, but we also know there are some who are not feeling the same pressure of a reduced income so we ask those of you so fortunate to consider helping make up the difference by increasing your giving, literally stand in the gap for those who cannot. If you haven’t already established an online recurring giving account you can do so HERE.

CONTINUING TO GROW, GATHER, AND SERVE:

Resources to Equip You:
You are not alone while seeking to grow as a follower of Jesus, leading your family, or connecting as a community. We are blessed to have a number of different resources available to you HERE.

If you have needs or want to serve:
Fill out THIS FORM if you have any needs you’d like help with, or if you are able and willing to serve others. 

Daily Scripture Meditation: 10 Minute Monastery is a new podcast of Redemption Peoria, where we seek the noble task of slowing down and meditating together on the Holy Scriptures. You can currently subscribe to the podcast on iTunes or Spotify.

Stairwell Sessions (live on Facebook): Join us live on Facebook every Sunday and Wednesday at 4 pm for what we’re calling, Stairwell Sessions. The goal for these 60 minutes together will be to check in with you all, see how we can pray for one another, connect those of you who follow our church’s page but aren’t friends with each other and worship through song together. This isn’t a live-streamed service, but it is a good chance to unify our hearts and voices in worship.

Current Redemption Communities (RC’s): Stay closely connected to your RC leaders, as that is always, and especially in this season, the very best way to live out the gospel in a close-knit community. Be wise and be creative about how to gather, stay connected, and care for each other and those in your broader community. 

People not in an RC: If you are not in a Redemption Community please feel empowered to meet with friends or family to grow and build community. Take this opportunity to intentionally gather together with others virtually or in-person (as advised below) + participate with the broader community through the things we’ve listed above. Fill out the Care Form above if you have needs or want to be a part of helping to serve others. 

A Helpful Book: John Piper has recently released a new book, which may prove very helpful for you as you think through what God may be doing in and through this crisis. You can find that here.

BEING GOOD, LOVING NEIGHBORS:
We encourage you to gather and move toward others in ways that are responsible and loving

  1. Stay up to date with, and honor the recommendations of the White House and CDC (Center for Disease Control): LINK
    • We have relationships within Redemption Church with high-level medical professionals who work with the WHO and CDC and are faithful, committed, non-anxious followers of Jesus, and their strong message (plea) has been to take all recommendations, policies, and procedures, very seriously. 
  2. Please limit all gatherings to under 10 people. In any smaller gatherings please take extra care to observe common, wise-practices: 
    • Washing hands thoroughly & frequently 
    • Nobody present is sick or has any reason to believe they’ve been exposed to COVID-19 
    • The most vulnerable (over age 65, weakened immune system, etc.) choose not to attend.
    • If you are able to gather, consider offering to connect those who might be unable to join you in-person through a computer or your phone, where they can digitally join your discussion afterward.  

CHARGE TO THE CHURCH:
Ephesians 4:11-14 paints a beautiful picture of how God has called leaders to equip the saints (you, me, all of us) for the work of the ministry. While we are working hard to provide guidance and care, our primary charge is to equip and send the people of God to proclaim and display the good news of Jesus in all of life. Take the initiative, be creative, be thoughtful, and reach out to others as the Spirit leads you. You don’t have to ask permission or wait to be prompted by church leadership to love God and love your neighbor. Be encouraged, blessed, and empowered to creatively live as the people of God sent for every good work.

We know God will protect and provide for His church. As God said to Abram in Genesis 15:1 – 

“Fear not Abram, I am your shield, your reward shall be very great.” 

As we remain faithful in the midst of turmoil believing God is our shield, our great reward will be that He will be glorified and we will receive His peace.