UPDATE: Large metro churches suspend Sunday services, switch to online services

Coronavirus

UPDATE: Crossings Community Church leaders announced that Crossings Community campuses will be closed and services will be held online.

Church officials released the following statement:

“In light of the latest developments, all campuses are worshiping online only tomorrow. Our leadership team is actively monitoring the evolving information and circumstances around COVID-19. We want you to know that the health and safety of our members, guests and our community is always a priority. While we cannot gather in person, we will still have an opportunity to worship together and we invite everyone to gather together at http://live.crossings.church at 9:15 a.m., 10:45 a.m. or 12:15 p.m.

The Church is so much more than a building, we can still BE the Church during this trying time. Let’s make sure to pray constantly in the days to come, look to help those in need, call those who may be isolated, and show our community what it means to be a voice of hope. We will keep you updated on the status of other church programming and future weekend services as we continue to monitor the situation.”

Life.Church is also closing its campuses and will hold services online.

Original Story

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – With mass gatherings being canceled or postponed due to the coronavirus threat, church leaders are now left to decide how to protect their congregations. 

Some churches say they will proceed as planned with safety measures in place, while other churches are suspending services altogether.  

Mayflower Congregational United Church is one of the churches that have suspended services. 

Reverend Lori Walke says the decision is all about protecting those most at risk to COVID-19. 

“We are encouraging people to take a posture of awareness. Not panic,” Walke said. “I had a colleague say, ‘Since I’ve not pastored people through a pandemic before, I don’t know all the answers. I’m paying attention to science, and praying for wisdom.’”

As of right now, we’re told all Oklahoma Life Church campuses will be open this weekend. The same goes for Crossings Community Church. 

Leaders say they understand why other churches would suspend services, but they wouldn’t open their doors if they didn’t think it was safe. 

“We’ve made sure our people know they don’t have to shake hands anymore,” Blake Bastin, with Crossings Community Church, told KFOR.  “We’ve changed our communion and our offering processes so we aren’t passing plates, increased the frequency of our disinfectant programs.”

Oklahoma’s Catholic churches have also taken similar precautions, such as no longer drinking from the same cup during communion and discouraging the holding and shaking of hands. 

Despite the denomination, the same piece of advice stands true.  If you’re sick or feel sick, stay home. 

Many churches say you can also attend services online at home with family and neighbors. 

“People in the congregation who have any risk know that that’s an option. For the rest of us, if we are able, we’ve taken the right precautions,” Bastin said.  “As of right now, if nothing changes, we want to show up on Sunday and worship like we normally would.”

Bastin says Crossings is also monitoring the travel of all staff and volunteers to make sure no one has been to a high-risk area.

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