Southridge Baptist Church,

First and foremost, please know how deeply saddened I, and many of your Southridge leaders are by the current circumstances our church finds itself in, with several members testing positive for Covid-19 and many others quarantined after contact. We highly value gathering as the Body of Christ, and we feel the effects of not gathering.

However, given the spread of Covid-19 in Missouri, Cole County, and our own church, the Covid-19 Task Force consisting of myself, Greg White, Lena Mantle, Roy Burgess, Frank Vernon, and Don Davidson have decided that the wisest course of action for our church is to continue worshipping virtually for the next two weeks.

This means that Southridge will be worshipping virtual-only on Sunday, November 22 and Sunday, November 29. After these two weeks, the Covid-19 Task Force will reassess in-person gatherings beginning on December 6. The service will be available for streaming on both our Facebook page and website: southridgechurch.org

Tentatively, our Annual Business Meeting is still scheduled for Sunday, December 6 following the service. If you have Operation Christmas Child Boxes filled, they can be returned to the prayer room at Southridge before this Sunday. Additional announcements can be found in the Southridge Weekly.

Even though we are choosing to not worship in-person for the next two weeks, as one of your pastors, I encourage you to intentionally connect with others from church. This can be something as simple as texting a brother or sister in Christ and asking how you can pray for them. If you are comfortable with gathering in a smaller setting, have people over for dinner, or invite them over to watch the service together. If you are comfortable with gathering, we encourage DNA Groups and Food and Fellowship Groups to meet. Church, even though these circumstances are far from ideal, the world still ought to be able to see that we are Jesus’ disciples by our love for one another (John 13:35).

Church, may this be a time where we are zealously praying for one another. Myself and the Covid-19 Task Force would covet your prayers. Pray that God would give us wisdom and that He would lead us to make wise decisions that honor God and spur us on to love one another. Also, be praying for one another. This is a time where many may be susceptible to loneliness or discouragement. May God graciously meet us in this time and fill us with His joy and peace!

Above all, may our eyes remained fixed on Jesus (Hebrews 12:1-2). We have unshakable hope, Christian! Christ has conquered sin and death, and we have been forgiven and reconciled to God by grace through faith. Even in the most tumultuous times, that Gospel message is where our confidence rests. Praise be to God!

If you have any questions or concerns please reach out to me, another pastor, a deacon or a member of the Leadership Council.

In Christ,

Taylor Whitmore and the Covid-19 Task Force