COVID-19 UPDATE 7/17/2020
Montana Governor Steve Bullock has given a directive requiring face coverings for indoor spaces open to the public. This applies to churches as well. I must admit, as a pastor, face coverings make me feel unapproachable or separated from those I want to connect with relationally.
Also, I am not a science expert, but I struggle when there are many voices with conflicting information on just what is the best approach in dealing with the potential spread of the coronavirus. There are other agendas to consider as well, some political in nature while others are spiritual.
This I do know, that the Bible says we are to honor our authorities (Romans 13:1) if doing so does not hinder our ability to honor and follow Jesus Christ and proclaim the Gospel to our community. Does this directive infringe upon our religious liberties to carry on our mission? How far is too far? Many of us at Grace Bible Church have been wrestling with these issues throughout the past several months.
After much thought, we have decided to honor our authorities yet again for the sake of what is good for our communities. The directive states that, “the use of face coverings is a modest imposition that can do a great deal to keep Montanans safe and Montana businesses open.” Therefore, we will comply within reason with this directive for the purpose of helping our community reduce the impact of Covid-19 and protect the vulnerable.
Before and after the sermon I will be wearing a mask and the rest of the staff will wear masks as well. We feel we should do what is required of others. We want everyone to know that we still value connecting with you and do not want anyone to feel that we are unapproachable. As I have said before, I consider these measures temporary and do not adhere to those who believe we are going to have a “new normal.”
Our prayers are with those suffering harm physically, emotionally, spiritually and financially throughout the pandemic. We also pray for those serving in harm’s way as first responders and medical personnel, and for our community, state and national leaders as they make critical decisions. Last, we pray for churches around the world as they declare God’s truth. Please read the following charts that explain the requirements.
Pastor Phil Newby
After following the two-week recommendation to go back to phase one, we are happy to announce that we will have Nursery and Sunday School this week! All youth events will start back up as well.
COVID-19 UPDATE 6/19/2020
It has been strongly recommended by our local authorities to return to phase one status temporarily due to recent cases of Covid-19 in Custer county. The leadership of Grace Bible Church has decided to honor our authorities (Romans 13:1- “Let everyone submit to the governing authorities, since there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are instituted by God.”) as long as doing so is a temporary measure for the good of the community and not an attempt to infringe upon our religious liberties. Therefore:
- Nursery and Children’s Sunday School, will be POSTPONED for the next two weeks. The reason is that social distancing is difficult and the size of classrooms is unpredictable. We encourage families with children to sit together upstairs. Children are always welcome in our corporate worship services, in fact, we encourage it. There will be Sunday School material for home use on our website.
- High Wednesdays and Sr. High Tuesdays will also be POSTPONED for the next two weeks.
- We will use our phase one set-up during the worship service which is every other row and 6 feet apart for the next two weeks.
- We encourage those at high risk to join the service online from home. We live stream the 8:45am service, and record it for later viewing.
- We encourage those with any symptoms to also join us online from home.
This is a very frustrating time, an unprecedented time, and we all have different views as to how to deal with it. Many are skeptical of the true nature of this pandemic, while others desire even more measures of prevention. We ask for your prayers as we try to do what is right even though there is no way to please everyone in doing so. Our desire is to glorify Jesus Christ as we care for our community.
Pastor Phil Newby
Now that Montana is officially in Phase 2 of reopening, we can finally provide Nursery and Sunday School during both of our Sunday morning services!
We will be following the guidelines and recommendations of the CDC in our classrooms. We continue to ask that if you, your child or anyone in your immediate family have any symptoms to please stay home. For more information on our Well Child Policy click here: https://gbcmilescity.com/childrens-ministries/sunday-school/
Governor Bullock has announced that Montana will start Phase 2 on Monday, June 1st. We will be letting you know soon what changes will take place for the church services in Phase 2 of re-opening. For the next two Sundays, we will continue with our plan of social distanced seating and sanitizing between services. Stay tuned!
Please watch this video for updated guidelines for this Sunday morning, May 3rd.
We are excited to be able to hold services this Sunday during our regular service times of 8:45 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
However, there are some social distancing guidelines that need to be followed as set up by Governor Bullock. Here is a video that explains what church is going to look like on Sunday morning.
***AT THIS TIME, THERE STILL WILL BE NO NURSERY OR SUNDAY SCHOOL AVAILABLE SINCE WE CANNOT SOCIALLY DISTANCE IN THAT SETTING.***
If you are at high risk or have any symptoms and are continuing to stay home during this time, we will still be live streaming at 8:45 a.m. on the web.
We will be having our Good Friday service and Easter Sunday service ONLINE. Unfortunately, we will not be able to hold services on the church campus for yet another week.
HOWEVER, we would like you to send us pictures or videos of what church looks like at your house. We are working on a project and would like as many as possible. Please send them to email@example.com or text them to 951-1435.
Good Friday service will be online this week at 7:00pm, and Easter Service will be live streamed on Sunday at 8:45am.
Because of the shelter in place directive, OUR SERVICES WILL BE STREAMED ONLINE THIS SUNDAY, APRIL 5TH, and we will not be having services on the church campus.
A Note From Pastor Phil:
“We are so looking forward to the Sunday we can all be together again, but until then, we encourage all of you to lift each other up during this time of physical distancing.
Sometimes we feel like we are powerless to do something to help, but remember we can always pray. Prayer is vital right now. Pray for our community, our church, our families, our country and our world. Just know that we are praying for you!”
– Pastor Phil
We are making decisions on a week-by-week basis. This coming Sunday, March 29th will be another ONLINE ONLY church service.
All main church events will continue to be postponed until further notice. Note, however, that the church is open throughout the week for anyone who needs to come by.
For those who are in our Memory Verse Program, the church is still open during normal business hours for any kids wanting to come in and say their verses. Kids may also say their verses over the phone if an adult is present on their end. We will be extending the deadline, so don’t worry if you have fallen behind.
We also want everyone to know that we do have a food pantry at the church for those in need.
In an effort to follow national and state recommendations, we have decided to NOT have on-campus services this Sunday, March 22nd.
We will have our Sunday service online (https://gbcmilescity.com/
We will also provide Sunday School material for toddlers up to High School for those who want to do Sunday School at home. We will post a link to that material soon.
We want everyone to be aware that we do have an online giving option on our website as well (https://gbcmilescity.com/
We will keep posting updates here and on our website. Please call us with any needs that come up. Our staff will still be at the church during regular business hours.