28 October 2020
To our MUBC family,
As mentioned in our recorded service on Sunday, October 25th and announced in the church newsletter, the leadership feel it is the right time to recommence gathering as church again. We are excited at the prospect of what this means, but are aware there are many hurdles still to be negotiated as we face yet another new chapter together as a church.
Below are some of the details regarding the planning towards re-gathering from Sunday 8 November:
- We are looking to have three weekly services that are tailored towards specific ages. While this is not our preference because the church needs unity in the midst of diversity, it is appropriate for this time. The services will be Sunday 4pm for children and families, Sunday 6pm for youth and young adults and 11am Wednesday morning for seniors and retirees. We anticipate the services will run for 45-50 minutes. While each service will have a different demographic in mind, anyone is free to attend any of the services.
- We recognise we will not be able to fit all our church into these three services because of the spacing arrangements. In fact, we are having to limit our numbers to 40 per service (children in kids ministry are in addition to this number) with pre-booking through the office or our website. So, please extend consideration and grace to one another. We will continue our online presence by recording the sermon and some other parts of the services, which we aim to upload early in the week.
- The many COVID safe rules will need to be upheld as we meet together. These include; no congregational singing, no handshakes or hugging, social distancing, registering on entry and other restrictions around socialising and food. While these initial services will be different, we do hope that there is an excitement around our coming back together. When we gather, we will outline the aspects that will make up each service.
We understand that these arrangements are not ideal for some, but these are only interim measures, and we would ask that you continue to trust us in what has been a very difficult season for leadership decision making. We have mentioned previously that we will not “get it all right”, but we are dependent on God as we move forward. While there are many reasons for “Why Wednesday morning?”, one of the major ones is to keep our seniors safe by distance from other age groups and allowing time between other events in order for COVID cleaning to take place.
Because of restricted numbers please contact the office to pre-register for any of the services. We are currently working on the means to pre-register through our website, and will let you know when this is available. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we walk with one another in these extraordinary times.
(Doug, Bruce, Mark and Mark)
A letter from Pastor Doug
28th June, 2020
The word ‘unprecedented’ has been used way too many times of late, however, it is a word that seems to sum up our reality. In talking with many different people, I realise that some have been busier than ever, others have found coping very difficult and still others have breezed through without many concerns.
Let’s be careful not to take the chainsaw to 2020 just yet though, because for many people it has been a year of great learning and stretching. Our Sovereign God has been at work in you, in our church, and in the church worldwide, working all things together for His good. Faith growth often only comes through pain, hardship, loss and turmoil. It’s in these things that we reach out to God with a renewed level of faith and dependence. It does us good to think deeply on what He has been working on in each of us.
A question I’ve been asked lately is; “When can we come back together?” The answer is that we are not rushing but want to rebuild steadily.
- We will for now continue our online service on YouTube and ‘Wake Up Wednesday’ on our MUBC Facebook page.
- For some weeks now we have recommenced our prayer times in the middle hall. Wednesday nights 7-8pm and Thursday morning 7-7:40am. Please consider coming.
- Many small groups have moved from zoom meeting to meeting in homes or in the church facility.
At the time of writing there are still many restrictions in place which include: 4m2 per person (56 people in our auditorium), cleaning before and after all groups (includes wiping over all chairs, tables, door handles etc. with sanitiser), no singing, restrictions around food, keeping a list of all who enter with contact details, no personal contact (handshakes, hugs). I don’t know about you, but all those things tell me that it’s wise to wait a little while longer before we re-gather on Sundays.
As we move forward let me encourage you in a couple of things:
Firstly, if you’re in need of some company, a yarn, a coffee; reach out to someone. Now is not the time to say the pastor hasn’t called, or no one has visited. The hard reality is that the church is not actually here to meet your needs, rather, you are the church. For some time now we have urged and encouraged everyone to join a small group, so again, please take the opportunity to do that. Call Bernie on 0492 955 588 and he will link you in. As we rebuild, we will need to go from small to large, so; connect, encourage, stretch.
I have enjoyed catching up with a stack of folk in recent weeks in many different ways and am only a phone call or email away.
Second, talking about rebuilding, in the new term we are to start a series in Nehemiah called “Together we Build”. Sound appropriate for our time?
Third, be encouraged, keep your eyes fixed on Jesus the author and perfector of your faith – Hebrews 12:2. Remember you are citizens of heaven, so live in that reality – Phil 1:27/3:20. Make your first priority to seek God’s Kingdom and righteousness – Matt 6:33. And remember, you were ransomed by the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God – 1 Peter 1:18-19.
Every Blessing in Christ,