Compiled by Jim Nieman and Chris Moon
Crossroads Christian Church, Washington Court House, Ohio, formally launched an online campus on Sunday, the church’s first weekend back with in-person services after shutting down their building in mid-March due to the coronavirus.
“We did an online poll and found 35 percent of our people said they will not return to in-person church until the fall,” explained Adam Lynch, lead pastor of the church, which has been sharing recorded services online for several weeks. “Knowing that almost half of our growing church is going to be watching online, we decided to livestream and start an online campus.
“We want our people to know that those who are watching at home are just as important as those in the building.”
Crossroads, which averaged 375 in 2019, is changing their website to make it easier for people to click and find next steps and make decisions for Christ. An online-only small group will also be starting soon.
“The idea of an online campus may not be new, but for rural communities, the idea is very outside the box of a traditional church,” Lynch said. “[Our] people are actually very excited about an online option.”
_ _ _
Magness and Michael Cummings, pastor of Greater Love International Church, both attended Emmanuel Christian Seminary. Magness said he sought out Cummings in an effort to build a relationship with the African-American community and to work against racism.
“I’m good at talking,” Magness wrote. “But with Michael, I learned I also needed to listen. Sometimes I needed to just show up and stand in the crowd.”
Magness’s article emerged from a speech he gave at a local vigil. He encouraged white pastors to befriend African-American pastors in order to become allies against racism.
Magness wrote, “I learned so much from Michael. I learned, for example, that my experience in the world is not universal. When I think it is, I say things about race and racism that aren’t right. If I want to be an ally against racism in my city, I have to listen to others’ experiences and trust them.”
_ _ _
Christian Standard is conducting a COVID-19 Church Impact Survey.
We respectfully ask church leaders to take a few minutes to let us know how COVID-19 has impacted your church thus far, and how you anticipate it will impact your church in the coming months.
Click here to go to the survey.
We will be collecting responses through Friday, June 12. Thank you for participating!
_ _ _
Dudley Rutherford says his church, Shepherd Church in Southern California, will host a national prayer event Saturday night that pairs African-American pastors and white pastors—people who have a genuine friendship—“and they’re simply going to pray for each other.” In a video announcing the event, Rutherford encouraged pastors and ministers across the country to tune in and join in prayer.
Among those planning to take part are Tony Evans and Greg Laurie, and Kyle Idleman and Robert Tate.
The event will be aired via Facebook Live on perhaps 100 million Facebook pages, Rutherford said. While details are still a bit sketchy, the Spire Network Facebook page will be among those participating. Pray.com is helping to make arrangements, Rutherford said.
“There has never been a more important time than right now for you and I to lead in this effort in building racially diverse churches and standing for justice and equality,” Rutherford said.
_ _ _
East Bartlesville Christian Church of Bartlesville, Okla., reached out to 650 graduates from three area schools—Bartlesville, Dewey, and Copan high schools—to congratulate them this spring. The church sent cards of congratulations that included two Chick-fil-A meal-deal vouchers, one provided by EBCC and the other provided by Chick-fil-A through arrangements with local owner-operator Chase Allcott (a Milligan College graduated who served almost 15 years with Christ In Youth).
_ _ _
Servants with Abundant Life Church in Damascus, Ore., have spent a lot of time on the phone with senior citizens during the COVID-19 pandemic.
A story in the Columbian details the church’s efforts to reach out to its older population after the new coronavirus proved especially problematic for that group. The church asked seniors whether they needed any groceries or prescription medicines.
The effort blossomed when the chaplain with the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office enlisted the church’s help in contacting as many of the county’s 33,000 seniors and others most vulnerable to COVID-19.
“Most were doing OK,” said Jeff Boxwell, pastor of outreach and involvement at Abundant Life. “With coronavirus, one of the big things is loneliness. They really appreciate the call.”
_ _ _
The 168th Northwest Christian Convention—known also as Oregon Christian Convention—will take place online this year due to the coronavirus. The event will be June 23-28 and the content will be available all year long. The theme this year is “Worth It.” Speakers will include Jeremy Jernigan, lead pastor with Abundant Life Church, Vancouver, Wash., and Oregon native LeRoy Lawson, a pastor, professor, and author. Reservations are requested. A dedicated convention website is being developed. Learn more at www.oregonchristianconvention.org.
_ _ _
Send news to [email protected].