Hi Zoe Family,
In light of the fast-moving news of the coronavirus, we wanted to update you on decisions that we are making as a church. Thinking especially of our mature members and those with pre-existing physical ailments, we are cancelling our 8AM service and making our 10:30AM service available online only. We might continue this format until the end of March but are carefully monitoring the situation and will keep you posted about ongoing developments.
We are communicating this message to every person in our database through emails, texts and phone calls, but because of the lateness of the hour, we’re also asking that you help us play the telephone game: contact the Zoe members and visitors in your personal circle to get the word out.
Please know that this decision comes with much discussion and discernment. This is meant to help exercise extraordinary kindness in a time of great need for many who might be vulnerable.
We are also following directives from our public officials: On Thursday, March 12, 2020, we received information from two different briefings: the County and State Departments of Public Health. These briefings were held to discuss with Faith-based organizations the severity of this pandemic and the Executive Order sent down from the Governor’s office, emphasis on “Order.” The Order outlined that no event with more than 250 persons in attendance should take place in California and those events with less than 250, although approved, MUST employ “Social Distancing,” which means there must be 6 feet between family groups and individuals in all directions.
In sum, minimizing social contact is one of the best practical ways to diminish the effect of the virus. We want to do our part to make our environment safe for everyone. We anticipate that this will be a temporary measure and are confident that the Lord will sustain us: “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous run to it and are safe” (Proverbs 18:10, NKJV).
As we’ve declared over the last couple of Sundays, God has positioned us to be a center for healing, both physically and otherwise. The current pandemic has not changed this. While we will miss being able to gather physically for worship, teaching and laying hands on the sick, we invite you to receive God’s healing through faith in His Word.
We will continue to preach the Word each Sunday, so gather around a SmartTV or computer in your home or on your mobile device to worship and receive the Word together at 10:30am. Our service will be broadcast from our main sanctuary with worship and teaching as usual. We might not be in the same room, but our hearts will be connected together as we gather remotely.
Our staff is committed to connecting with you personally and seeking creative ways to serve the needs of others. In that same spirit, we encourage you to also seek to make efforts to connect with one another through phone calls, Facetime, group texts, Facebook groups and commenting, etc. With all of our technological resources, let’s get creative in how we interact and continue to encourage and bless one another!
We also want you to know that if you are in a high-risk category and need assistance, we would be happy to deliver groceries, run errands, etc. Should you have any prayer requests or other needs, please do not hesitate to let us know. We look forward to serving you. Call us at (562) 906-5000 x100 regarding any of these requests. You can also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for prayer requests and email@example.com for special assistance.
Ways to Give
As you know, giving is an extension of our worship. Here are ways to do this while we are temporarily modifying our worship gathering format:
- Text to Give: 1-562-200-0339
- Give online: zcf.org (click “GIVE” button on the righthand corner)
- Give through the Zoe Christian Fellowship App (Download it from an App Store) Apple Google Play
- Mail: Zoe Christian Fellowship of Whittier 10252 Mills Avenue Whittier, CA 90604
As we continue to monitor the coronavirus situation, we are committed to keeping you informed. As updates become available, we will continue to send emails, update our website and phone line, and use social media channels to get information out. Also, if you are part of a smaller group or ministry, you might expect further communication from your group leaders on how you can connect together during this time. We are asking life groups to substitute physical gatherings with prayer calls for at least the next two weeks. We recommend www.freeconferencecall.com for resources to set up this call. The prayer calls are also consistent with our prayer and fasting focus for the remainder of this month.
Here is a refresher on the details about our corporate fast:
- We are calling the church to fast for two weeks, Monday through Friday only. We will fast from Monday, March 16th to Friday, March 20th and then from Monday, March 23rd to Friday, March 27th. Each day during the fast, we will refrain from eating until 5pm, drinking only water or juice (pure liquids only please) until 5pm that day. We will culminate the fast at our late-night prayer meeting on Friday, March 27th, which will begin at 7:30pm and end at Midnight.
- Each missed meal should be substituted with a time of prayer, but we ask that you make an extra special effort to pray during your lunch hour, namely any time between 11am and 2pm.
- Our prayer focus will be as follows:
- Wisdom to respond to the crisis both naturally and spiritually (Proverbs 2:3-7)
- Protection (Psalm 91, Psalm 23, Proverbs 18:10, Proverbs 11:8)
- Healing (Exodus 15:26; Exodus 23:25; Psalm 91:3,6,10; Isaiah 53:4-5; Matthew 8:14-17; Mark 5:21-43; I Peter 2:24)
- Cure/Vaccine/End of the Crisis (Proverbs 2:3-7; Daniel 2:17-30; II Chronicles 26:5,15)
- Revival (II Chronicles 7:14)
- During the Fast, Dr. Joshua will post a daily video devotional for your encouragement. It will be accessible on the website, the mobile app (Apple Google Play), social media (Facebook Instagram) and the podcast subscription.
For many, this is a strange and fearful time. We remind you that we are confident in our loving and faithful God and take comfort in His ongoing presence with us. Let’s be a people who continues to radiate peace during this time. And may we prayerfully look for opportunities around us to be the hands of feet of Jesus to those who are struggling through this crisis.
Take rational precautions and believe God! Do what’s needed in the natural and expect the supernatural! Be mindful of sound medical advice, but also keep your ear attentive to the wisdom that comes from Jesus, the Great Physician!
Helping people to live for God’s purpose,
Dr. Joshua and Bishop Ed