Updated Tuesday, May 26, 2020
These are difficult and uncertain times for the world we live in. As a local church, we are sobered by the painful consequences of living in a broken world. But we are grateful for the hope we have in Jesus. With the spread of COVID-19 and uncertainty of our future, never before has it been more important to help one another fight for joy in Him.
In keeping with federal and state health officials, we have temporarily suspended all church-related gatherings for the foreseeable future. That’s really hard. God created us to be a part of a local community, and we grieve the loss of being able to see one another face to face. At the same time, we don’t stop being the church. We are a people, not a meeting. Thus, the way we walk out our mission to make much of Jesus in Wilmington may look and feel drastically different for a time. But our God hasn’t changed. He still calls us to treasure Christ, pursue authentic community, and love our neighbors.
The following information is designed to help us to do exactly that – to walk in a manner worthy of the gospel no matter what COVID-19 brings our way. Though this information may change, we can rest in knowing that our Father never changes, and will provide us with everything we need to live a life that is pleasing to Him.
As members of a local body, we cherish the time we spend with each other on a weekly basis. As a congregation gathered together, God blesses us with countless means of grace when conversations are had, songs are sung, and when the sacraments are received. But something unique happens when the word of truth, the gospel, is preached, week-in and week-out, to the same body: it bears fruit and grows (Colossians 1:5-6), bringing special encouragement to the gathered church (Hebrews 10:25). This life-giving, fruit-bearing work in a local body is difficult to replicate when we cannot gather together, nor do we want to try to. This time of separation ought to “make the heart sick” to return to our regular rhythms of gospel fellowship.
And yet, though we are apart, we are grateful to God for the means of technology that allow us to encourage one another from a distance. We will continue using Facebook Livestream on Sunday, starting with a few songs and scripture at 9:45am, then welcome and a sermon from the Gospel of Mark at 10.
For those who are unable to watch the livestream, audio recordings will continue to be added to our weekly podcast.
Those of us with children at home are probably learning how challenging it can be to keep them occupied, but it can be just as challenging to continue the good and glorious work of discipleship in a time of crisis. We recognize that discipleship takes place in the home first – but the church certainly has a role to play in the spiritual upbringing of the children of GCC members.
While we are apart, we are making available the Gospel Story Curriculum, which our children normally learn from every Sunday when we gather. Parents will be able to use the lesson each day during the week to remind our young ones who Jesus is and what He did for us. We will also include the current month’s memory verse to memorize as a family so that God’s word will stay on our hearts and minds. Click below for this week’s lesson!
Week of May 24 – 30:
The Birth of Jesus Foretold: Luke 1
May Scripture Memory Verse:
“But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Mark 10:34b-45
Pilgrim’s Progress Movie
Watch John Bunyan’s classic Pilgrim’s Progress for free here.
The Lord has richly provided for our church over the last year, and we trust Him to continue to take care of us. We also depend on the offerings we receive every month to continue in gospel ministry. If you’re a part of the body or a regular attender at Grace City Church, please continue to give generously as you are able. This is really important for the long-term health of our congregation.
You can give online, by text, or by mailing a check to GCC, details on our giving page.
More than ever, it is important that we continue to reach out to one another. We can do this by phone or text, or through our private Facebook group, Grace City Church Family (Please contact Pastor Joshua for access). Please use these means to ask how your fellow members are really doing and find out how you can pray!
Our Missional Community will continue to meet on the first and third Wednesday of the month through a video networking tool called Zoom. We will post each meeting’s invitation on our private Facebook page and send through email for those who are not on Facebook. We’ll also schedule additional meetings as needed for prayer, updates, or encouragement.
There is an abundance of information on the internet about the COVID-19 virus, but the best resources out there come from official sources, like the North Carolina Department of Health. Here is a good FAQ guide to the virus.
If at any time you begin to come down with symptoms of illness:
- Contact the elders of Grace City Church right away for prayer. With your permission, we will alert the body and ask them to begin praying.
- Carefully follow these guidelines from the Center for Disease Control to care for yourself and protect those around you.
If you are caring for someone with COVID-19, follow these recommendations from the CDC. As much as it might feel awkward, please don’t enter a sick person’s home to deliver a meal. Give them a call and drop it off on their porch. Remember your ability to love others well depends on not getting sick yourself!
Needs in the Body
We are a small family, but it is our joy and privilege to care for one another as we are able (Galatians 6:10). If you are a part of the body of Grace City and find yourself in need of common necessities or are unable to leave your home, please let us know. Don’t wait to speak up until you find yourself in a desperate situation. Early intervention is best.
If we learn that there are specific practical or financial needs, we’ll do our best to ensure you are cared for!
Grace City Church Wilmington
Meeting Sundays at 10am
1121 S. Front Street
Wilmington, NC 28401