Hello Faithbridge Family!
A pressing question that your staff and leadership have been wrestling with is: “When will Faithbridge reopen?” The short answer is July 5th. The full answer, however, is complex for several reasons:
First of all, Faithbridge did not close down as a church. In fact, I have been extremely proud of our staff and volunteers in meeting so many needs during this crisis time. Also, our worship and ministry with kids, students, and adults had to pivot, but did not stop.
Second, having said that, I am fully aware of how valuable physical space is to the life of a church. The relationships that happen there cannot be replaced. It is my great desire to return to “meeting together,” as it says in Hebrews 10:25, as soon as it's feasible and sustainable.
Third, our size and style of worship are difficult to experience with a myriad of restrictions. Over 90% of the churches in America average around 100 people in attendance. These churches are poised to open more quickly because social-distancing guidelines are usually already being met. The same is true for churches with large auditoriums--they have a larger seating capacity and are able to spread people out more easily. At Faithbridge, we offer two distinct types of worship services with a sanctuary that would limit us, when following Caledonia guidelines, to approximately 50 congregants per service (25% of capacity).
Broadly speaking, I have become increasingly aware that we are ministering to three groups of people:
1. Those who will run back to church as soon as we re-open the physical building.
2. Those who will hesitantly walk back to church after watching how reopening may affect virus transmission.
3. Those who will not come back to the physical building until there is a proven treatment or vaccine.
Here is what I know and I want you to know as of today:
1. Your pastors/leaders are committed to seeking God for wisdom in decision-making. Like you, we are missing gathering together. Responsible leadership takes into consideration every variable that affects this organic movement called Faithbridge. You would expect nothing less from your leadership.
2. We will continue to have online worship as well as Kid Life, Student Life, and adult group meetings even while physically closed.
3. We are a welcoming and inviting church. These characteristics are very important and we want to make sure we provide an environment in which you are inclined to invite people.
You can help us in the discernment process regarding timing of implementing the various stages of reopening. We have sent a link to a 1 QUESTION SURVEY. Please fill it out right away! This will help us determine your readiness to re-open our Franksville campus. We would like all responses to be received no later than Sunday evening, June 14th. If you did not receive an email with the survey link, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
I know this email does not answer every question you may have. Please know that your leaders are seeking God’s guidance to help us reunite safely and sustainably.