April 22, 2020
Dear West View family
We’re one week away from the end of the second lockdown period, and we await President Ramaphosa’s announcement tomorrow about what life will look like as we move into May. It is becoming obvious that the lifting of the lockdown will be very gradual. The focus will rightly be on reviving the gasping economy, with social and religious gatherings likely to be one of the last things to be permitted. I do not anticipate us returning to worship on the church campus before June. Ditto for small group life both on campus and in homes. We continue to explore online ways of being church, with our focus being on three areas:
- Pastoral Care: I’m so grateful for the team of volunteers and staff who are phoning their way through our membership database. WhatsApps are great, but there is something about hearing another’s voice that is so important. Other expressions of pastoral care include the WhatsApp prayer channel, tomorrow’s Zoom Prayer Meeting, and of course all the informal pastoral care that happens as congregation members look out for each other in so many ways. If you or someone you know has a need for pastoral care, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Empowerment and Outreach: In this pandemic, God calls us to arise and live into our calling to be Christ’s body – Christ’s hands, feet and heart. How privileged we are to have an established relationship with Mooiplaas – the poorest community in our geographic area – through Ditshego and Khuluma. Thank you to those who are participating in Friday’s Food pack, to those who have dropped off food for the needy or donated money for the same, and to those who are sewing face masks for distribution in the crowded and impoverished community of Mooiplaas.
- Spiritual Formation, Discipleship & Evangelism: Our inaugural Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning Zoom Bible Studies went extremely well, and will be held every Tuesday and Wednesday through our “Be Free” series. To receive our daily devotion, WhatsApp “Devo” to 072 537 2384. These devotions replace the Walking with West View vlogs. A few Home and Disciple Groups continue to meet over Zoom as well.
PRAYER CHANGES THINGS!
Our first weekly Zoom Prayer meeting will be tomorrow (Thursday 23rd) at 10h00. All welcome. The link will be posted on the WhatsApp channel.
I want to encourage you not to withdraw into yourselves and allow this time of physical isolation to become a time of social isolation. I am an introvert, yet I have found Zoom meetings and pastoral telephone calls to members to be so life-giving and energising. Could it be that during lockdown, we could even deepen our relationships with each other?
Grace and Peace