COVID-19 Ministry Update 3-12-20

Dear Stonebrook,

We have been closely following the news related to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) the last few weeks. Like many of you, we are thinking and praying about how to best prepare and protect our families and church. Some of you have asked what Stonebrook Church is doing (specifically) to prepare?      
 
As your pastors, foremost, we have been praying for God’s protection and guidance (Philippians 4:6-7).  We must remember that the Lord is in charge of these events and they don’t change His love and care for us. With that said, He also directs us to prepare in the face of danger (Nehemiah 4:9).   

We have also been discussing a plan for Stonebrook in preparation for the possibility of the virus spreading to Ames. We encourage everyone to keep abreast of developments on the CDC Website and the Iowa Department of Public Health WebsiteWe will be basing our plan on the information on these sites, and the plan may change as the threat changes. We will continue to communicate as things progress.

Here are some guidelines we have developed for Sunday morning services. These can also be applied to any other church events.

  1. We encourage people to refrain from shaking hands and hugging for the time being. Greet others verbally, use elbow bumps, or use other methods that do not spread germs.
  2. Use hand sanitizer. We have placed hand sanitizer in the foyer and in some of the classrooms. Unfortunately, we have been unable to find more to purchase. If you have some at home, consider bringing it with you and using it at church.
  3. Wash your hands with soap and warm water. Especially after using the restroom!
  4. If you are sick, stay home from church. If you are uncomfortable with the idea of being in a large crowd right now, stay home. We are working on streaming our services and putting them online so that people can watch at home. You will find more information about this on the Stonebrook Website, once we are ready.
  5. We plan to continue to have communion on the first of each month, however, we’ll change the way we distribute it to make sure and minimize risk of spreading germs.
  6. ISU will conduct all classes online, asking students to stay home for two weeks after spring break and possibly longer (President Wintergreen’s statement). Campus Fellowship leaders will contact CF members about ways to stay in touch during that time. 

Again, we do not want people to live in fear, but by faith. The Lord is sovereign, and we can trust Him as this unfolds. “Do not fear, for I am with you. Be not anxious, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will hold you in my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10

Feel free to contact us with any questions.

Brad Barrett
Dave Bovenmyer
Matt Heerema
on behalf of the Stonebrook Pastors