Latest Message from the Elders (Wednesday, 5/13/20)

Dear CF Saints:

We are unfolding our plans to begin meeting together again on Sunday mornings. We are looking forward to being together soon for fellowship and worship. We also want to maintain a healthy environment in which to meet and be thoughtful of those around us. We are planning to continue with the live stream each Sunday for those who desire or need to stay home until times are more stable to be out in public.

We have been discussing options and safeguards to make this happen as soon as possible. We plan to restart services May 24th. Our plans for that Sunday will have a modified time schedule. We will begin with early remembrance at 8:45am with a modified distribution of elements. The Worship Service will begin at 10:00 am as we have done over the last several weeks.

We also want to share some of the safeguards we plan to put in place for our meetings. First, we want to encourage those who may have underlying health conditions, either for yourself or a family member, to stay home or have watch parties with a few neighbors, friends, family or others who may have reason to avoid gathering in larger groups. We will not be offering a staffed nursery, toddler room, or children’s church, however parents are welcome to use these rooms if needed. There will also be no Sunday School until further notice.
By prayerfully making the decision to meet again corporately, we do not wish to offend anyone by encouraging anyone to act against their conscience. We also do not wish to limit anyone’s freedom in the Lord. We all need to care for one another; therefore we ask that you follow these basic guidelines when planning to attend any of these services:

1) Please be aware of one another’s concerns in meeting together and treat others as you would wish to be treated should you share that concern;
2) If you have a temperature or any other symptoms of COVID-19, we ask that you stay home.
3) If you have been around anyone who has been confirmed to have COVID-19 within the past 14 days, we ask that you stay home.
4) Masks are welcomed but optional (some will be on hand if you desire one)
5) We recommend families remain together during the service
6) Following recommended spacing in the seating areas will help others to avoid feeling threatened;

Some additional items we are implementing for our gathering are:
1) Extra cleaning protocols to clean common touch points such as door handles;
2) Keep doors open for easy entry (weather permitting);
3) Closing drinking fountains;
4) Have plenty of hand sanitizer available

We all have greatly missed being with our dear brothers and sisters in Christ, and it is with great anticipation and prayerful concern that we make these plans. The Lord has helped us and we look forward to thanking Him together very soon.
If you have any reservations about meeting together in person, we would like to suggest that you stay home until you are ready to return. That will give us opportunity to make any adjustments as needed. If you have any questions or concerns about these anticipated meetings, please contact any of the Elders.

The Elders

Live Stream of Sermon

Visit our Sermon Archives for an audio message of a past Sermons to encourage you.

Event Updates

  • The Sunday Message can be viewed on-line through the Live Stream at 10:00 am.
  • All Services and meetings are officially canceled for the next ten days or until further notice.
  • For opportunities to serve, scroll down to the Small Group section below.
  • Shut-ins, scroll down to the Small Group section below.
  • Quiz Meets are canceled.

Giving

As God has provided for you and even prospered you, we would encourage you to continue your gracious giving, just as we have been blessed these many past years. God is able and willing to supply your needs and our church needs.

  • Mail Checks to Christian Fellowship Church, 6711 Pilliod Rd., Holland, Oh. 43528
  • Bank Checks: arrange with your bank to mail checks directly to the above address.
  • We do not have an on-line option for giving at this time.
  • Contact Ken Falls 419-344-8045 with questions you might have for us.

Small Groups & Prayer

Though separated physically, we would desire to continue and expand our goals for believers to care and
look out for each other in a way that manifests the love of Christ to each other and to our neighbors.

  • We will be making the Small Groups ministry a priority in the coming weeks for outreach, care, and prayer.
  • Small Group leaders should use discretion as to whether they should gather or cancel, exercising necessary precautions. If you have questions, contact Ken Kutz 419-410-8857 or John Dudley 419-349-4708.

Care & Help

In an effort to serve our church body in these difficult and confusing times we are attempting to put together a team of people (men and women) who would be willing to run errands or go to the grocery store for our elderly, those with young children, and those who do not feel comfortable or medically able go out during this Coronavirus outbreak

If you are interested in helping and being the hands and feet of Jesus, please contact:

  • To be a Volunteer: Scott Bernhard (419-367-8178) or Barb Bernhard (419-351-8026)
  • If you need assistance: Scott Bernhard  (419-367-8178)

Worship

Worship on Sunday

  • Our weekend service will be available for on-line viewing at 10:00 am on Sunday. Click on this Livestream link.

Worship through the week

  • We may post devotional videos at points throughout the week to help us keep a hopeful perspective, and our focus on Christ.
  • We encourage you to listen to worship songs on your preferred device, even create a play list on your favorite music app.
  • We strive in the coming weeks to offer more bible content through tools and helps we create or from others.

Outreach

  • We will be sharing in the future the opportunities God provides for us to serve.
  • The Toledo Gospel Rescue remains open and many opportunities for sharing the gospel exist. Our regularly scheduled service (4th Thursday of each month) when we provide and serve the meal, and also conduct the 7:00 pm service has NOT been canceled. Please plan to provide your assigned food by March 25th and call Scott Bernhard at 419-367-8178 if you would like to help serve or share the message.

Monitoring & Illness Prevention

Christian Fellowship leadership is monitoring the Coronavirus situation and will seek to follow the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), from the Ohio Dept of Health and Governor Mike DeWine as they address this evolving situation.

We seek to obey the governing authorities as we are taught to do in the Scriptures, as they give health guidance.

Practice steps to prevent illness, including frequent hand-washing, minimizing close contact (especially as you greet each other), and staying at home if you’re experiencing sickness (and seeking out medical care). For those at higher risk for serious illness from COVID-19, which includes older adults, those with chronic
medical conditions, or those with weakened immune systems, please take necessary precautions.

This virus easily spreads from person-to-person, needing our help to do this. It cannot do its damage without us. We can become its enablers. So, to a significant extent we influence how fast this virus spreads, giving all the more reason to be diligent to practice the preventative behaviors listed above.

Links:

Leadership’s Original Response 3/14/20

A Message from the Board of Elders

We want to communicate our thoughts and action plan to you as we respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and how it affects all of us here at Christian Fellowship Church. The Elders understand the overall concern for the health of our community and the anxiety this can create. It is our desire as a church to be good witnesses in our community and to strongly support one another through this difficult time. We first need to remind one another that our trust is in our Sovereign God, and our faith is such that nothing will happen apart from His sovereign will. Scripture also tells us that all things work together for good to those that love Him. This is a unique time in recent world history and we have an opportunity to show the love of Christ to the community around us.

It is a time when the state and national government have declared states of emergency and have mandated the size of meetings. Our church population is part of the at-risk group that needs to be protected. Equally important is how this decision impacts our community and our testimony in it. We want to be part of the solution and not part of the problem, in both reality and in the perception by our unsaved neighbors.

Our Thoughts

  • It is important that we stay connected to one another through this time and not become isolated.
  • This situation provides a potentially, unprecedented opportunity for the gospel in the coming days.
  • It provides us the opportunity to encourage connections in our congregation, to have spiritual times of prayer and worship while physically apart.
  • It also provides us the opportunity to help one another with practical needs, through our Small Groups.
  • Please remember that our Mighty God is in control and He is a Shelter and a Refuge for His people.

Our Actions

  • Our Elders and Deacons have prayed and communicated with each other, seeking the Lord’s direction.
  • We have a Small Group structure that we will utilize to ensure we are able to practically help others.
  • After careful deliberation we have made the hard decision to officially cancel our regular Sunday services for the near future.
  • We will livestream our Sunday messages.
  • We will continue to update everyone about future services and ministries.

We need to remember that we serve a Mighty God! He is not surprised by this, nor is He worried about this virus. Jesus willingly went to the cross to save us and He kindly showed us mercy in taking our place on that cross so that we may have fellowship with Him and one another.

This may seem like an overreaction to some (and we may agree), but it is our desire to be responsible and to protect those whom we love, and serve those we hope to reach with the gospel in an unhindered way.

From the bible, James.1:2-5 “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.”

Thank you for your patience and prayers for wisdom.

For the Elders Board, Tom Borck

Live Stream Tips and Help

A Message from Jason Moan

Audio Quality or Echoing:

This past Sunday, 3-22-20, was our first livestream. It came about very rapidly.  Because of that, we do not yet have the ideal (or final) equipment configuration to provide this stream.  The stream was delivered using nothing but an iPhone!  Which is the cause of the less than desired quality of the audio.  Although the speaker was wearing a microphone, we only used the speakers in the room for the music at the end otherwise the echo would have been much worse.  The microphone was used to record the audio like we do every other week.  Most of you who heard the echo were hearing the natural reverberation of what our empty auditorium sounds like.  There was at least one individual who thought they were hearing a really bad echo and then realized that they accidentally opened the livestream in two different tabs in their browser.

A Couple of Other Thoughts:

A suggestion was made to prerecord the message.  In the future this may be a very good option, but last week and this week the speakers both wanted to keep the schedule and venue the same as it usually is.  If, going forward, they decide it would be better to do it ahead of time we can certainly make that happen.

This is a totally new paradigm in which the speakers have to get used to preaching – to a virtually empty room and pay attention to a camera as if it were a person –  it’s bound to not feel natural to you the viewer.  Hopefully we won’t have to do this for so long that any one person finally gets used to it.  In the near future (God willing) we can begin streaming in front of a live audience again.

As we continue to improve the setup, we will be able to feed the microphone directly into the livestream.  This will eliminate (99.9%) the echoing heard in the stream.  We will also be able to show the slides should the speaker have any, and provide an additional camera angle to give it some dynamics.

Other ways to watch the livestream:

The survey feedback has confirmed that it would be beneficial to a number of you if you were able to watch the livestream on your TV.  There are a few ways you can accomplish this, so I am listing them here.

  • (Simplest) Connect a laptop or computer to the TV.
    1. If you have a laptop (preferred, otherwise a desktop) with an HDMI plug you should be able to connect it to the TV and display the stream from the website.
  • (Best results)  Stream through your Roku (or TCL-RokuTV) or AppleTV using an app.
    1. You first need to add the Boxcast app to your device.
    2. Once the app is added, open the app, go to the last row (4th or 5th down), scroll to the right until you see Christian Fellowship (approx. 15th item in the list).
      1. If you don’t see the Christian Fellowship channel in the list use the search icon in the first row to find it.
    3. Once it’s found open the Christian Fellowship channel and play the video from last Sunday for a minute or two.
    4. Stop the video and exit the app.
    5. Re-open the app and you should see the Christian Fellowship channel to the right of the search icon.
    6. If you have any trouble making this work you can reach out to me for assistance.
  • Screen Mirror (Cast) a smartphone or tablet
    1. The method for accomplishing this will depend on what type of phone/tablet (Android or iPhone) you have, type of Smart TV you have (Samsung, LG, Sony) and the version of the operating system on the device.
    2. Since there are so many variables involved with equipment this is not something I can explain in an e-mail.  If this is your best option I recommend performing a web search to locate instructions for your particular situation.  I may be available at a later date to assist you if you have difficulties.
  • Possible additional options in the future (TBA)