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Persevering Together

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Many things have changed in the last few days. As a church family, we believe that we are called to love and serve one another and our greater community, especially in these challenging times. Even if we cannot gather in groups, there are still ways to reach out for help if you need it and there are ways to serve if you are able.

As a response to the growing needs in our community, we are going to be starting up two COVID-19 initiatives as a church body. These initiatives will allow us to love one another, serve one another, and stay connected in the midst of everything going on in our world. 

Phone Tree Initiative
Our first initiative is a phone tree. A phone tree is a system of making regular phone calls to each other to stay connected. We will be organizing this phone tree in order to reach out to those in our congregation and community who are unable to leave their house for various reasons, such as self-isolation. This initiative will allow us to stay in community with one another, enjoying fellowship, and spurring one another on in love as we trust in God's plan. If you are interested in receiving regular calls from our SDBC Phone Tree team please fill out the online form (link below). You can also sign up by calling the church office at 604-943-8244.

Sign up to receive calls

Grocery and Supplies Initiative
The second initiative we will be starting is one that will allow us to deliver food and supplies to those who are unable to leave their homes. No matter what stage of social distancing we get to, we all need to purchase food and supplies. This initiative does not need to involve any direct contact or entering anyone's home. Rather, it can be as straightforward as receiving a grocery list, picking the groceries up, and delivering them to the recipient's front door. It is simply a way that we can be the hands and feet of Jesus by meeting tangible needs in this time. If you have any grocery or supply needs, please do not hesitate to let me know.

Sign up to receive grocery delivery

If you are able to help pick-up and deliver groceries and supplies, please email me.

As we continue to run this race and press forward together in unity and love, let us remember this charge in Hebrews 12: "Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God."

May our community come to know Jesus through the love and care we have for one another.

Posted by Mary Grierson

SDBC's Response to COVID-19: Update

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As we mentioned yesterday in our newsletter article, we have been monitoring the current COVID-19 situation carefully, and the most recent announcement from Adrian Dix (Minister of Health) and Dr. Bonnie Henry (Chief Health Officer of B.C.) provides an insight into our provincial government and health authorities' plans to contain and minimize the spread of the COVID-19 virus in British Columbia. As a part of their effort to protect our most vulnerable citizens from this virus, our provincial government is directing all organizations to cancel any gathering that involves more than 250 people. Here is an excerpt from the announcement from yesterday:

Effective today, we are also directing all event organizers to cancel any gathering larger than 250 people. This includes indoor and outdoor sporting events, conferences, meetings, religious gatherings or other similar events. This threshold has been selected, as it is much easier to maintain important social distancing to prevent transmission of COVID-19.

As our Sunday morning gatherings involve more than 250 people, we are making plans to cooperate with our government and health authorities to keep our community safe. Our Sunday morning services will not be held at our church facilities for the next few weeks until further notice is given. Instead of gathering as a large group at our church building, we're encouraging our church family to gather with their community groups and/or friends in smaller numbers to worship God and enjoy fellowship. This experience of church may be unfamiliar to some of us, but the intimate experience of gathering with brothers and sisters in our homes will be similar to how home churches gathered in the early church. On Sunday morning, at 10AM, you will be able to access a video service including songs of worship, church announcements, and the sermon. Please visit our website to access this video on Sunday morning. You can turn this video on and enjoy the service with others, and then have a time of meaningful prayer and fellowship.

If you're sick or have any symptoms of coughing, sneezing, or other flu like symptoms, we ask you to stay home and enjoy the video service at home. If you're at high risk of the virus and would like to stay at home to enjoy the video service, please feel free to do so. The bible calls us to be mindful of others and to care for them. "Count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others" (Philippians 2:3b-4). Let us live in obedience to this teaching in these challenging times, and put others' interest before our own to keep our community safe. Here are a couple recommendations from the Fellowship Pacific and the BC government on how we can serve the community at this time:

  • Contact and interact with those who may become quarantined or choose to stay at home because they are in a high-risk category. Specifically, it might be good to find a way for younger people to ensure the elderly know how to use the video call functions on their phones or computers so that they are able to have face-to-face contact with others in the church. Then, try to ensure that there is a system in place to maintain social contact with those in isolation.
  • The government leaders asked that faith communities arrange to deliver groceries or to pick up necessary prescriptions for those that need the help.

If you feel led to serve your neighbours in this way, please take the opportunity to be missional during this time. And please remember that as Christians, we do not operate out of fear. We live with confidence and hope because our God is trustworthy and faithful. This is an opportunity to demonstrate our calm, respectful, and loving response to our current challenges. May our God protect you, be with you, and lead you to live with hope and joy.

Posted by Paul Park

The Cross and the Crown

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Thankfully the season of spring is upon us. Trust me, it IS coming! All the signs of new life can be seen in cherry tree blossoms and blooming daffodils. I am so thankful for the change of season and a shift to lighter, dryer, and warmer days! With this brings the realization that the Easter celebration is only a few short weeks away! I want to warn you: we as a staff are planning for a party! Light has conquered darkness, death and the grave are defeated, and new life, through the resurrection of Jesus, is available to all.

Our Easter weekend at SDBC will be an incredible time of worship, reflection, and celebration. We have entitled this year's theme, The Cross and The Crown. On Good Friday we will contemplate the Cross, and all that Jesus did for us, journeying towards the darkness of the grave. On Easter Sunday, we will celebrate the One who wears the Crown, who dwells in unapproachable light, the KING OF KINGS and LORD OF LORDS. This will be a fantastic party that we, as a whole church family, will experience. We are excited for baptisms, times of worship, pancake breakfasts, and kids running around with huge chocolate covered smiles on their faces!

Invite cards will be available this Sunday at the Spotlight Table for you to pick up and give to your friends and neighbours! Please be praying for opportunities to connect people with the gospel…the great news of Jesus and his resurrection.

For all the details on our Easter weekend celebrations, visit our Easter page.

Posted by Jayson Oldham

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