Dear Imprint Church,
Just a couple days ago we sent out an email regarding COVID-19 and our plan for worship gatherings this Sunday. As you’ve likely seen in the news, things have escalated, with the Northshore School District cancelling on-site classes for up to 2 weeks and moving education to the cloud. Just today, the University of Washington announced it is suspending classes until March 20 and will also move to remote classrooms. We’ve also just received an email from Cascadia College informing us that all events in Mobius Hall, where Imprint Bothell meets, have been cancelled through the month of March.
This obviously has massive implications for our church, and our weekly Worship Gatherings. Our Elder board met last night to pray and discuss what we ought to do in light of the escalating virus, and Cascadia’s cancellation.
Because we’re one church in two locations and are committed to walking in step with each other, we have made the decision to postpone Worship Gatherings and other ministries at both locations of Imprint Church for the time being.
What To Expect Next
- At this time there is a lot that remains unknown and undecided. Imprint Bothell is homeless for at least the month of March. So we are prayerfully planning how we will start meeting in large groups again, and if we will have separate or combined Worship Gatherings.
- For the time being, Student Gatherings and Women’s Bible studies are put on hold. The Men’s Event that was scheduled for March 14, 2020 will also be postponed.
- We would encourage Imprint Groups and their leaders to determine if and when they’ll meet. In the absence of a corporate gathering, this could be a really good time to reach out to one another on a more personal level and care for one another, and press into our vision of mutual discipleship. If you do meet in your group, we would ask you to keep in mind the CDC’s recommendations for the prevention of COVID-19.
- We are considering ways to do something online on the week(s) that we cannot gather as church communities. We don’t know exactly what that looks like yet, and will communicate more soon. We want to think creatively about how we can continue to build into your lives spiritually even when we’re not gathering physically. We ask for your prayers for God’s leading in this. Stay up to date by following us on Instagram (Bothell, Woodinville), Facebook (Bothell, Woodinville), or Twitter.
- Ministry team leaders will be contacting you this next week or so with more information, updates, and maybe even some Christ-centered resources for you (and your family, as applicable).
The 3 Gs
A big part of our vision as a church is displaying how the Gospel makes us grateful and generous people. This is our chance to do this! In fact, part of the reason we are not holding Gatherings right now is because one of the best ways we can love others in a Christ-like way is by taking proactive steps to slow the spread of coronavirus and reduce the number of people infected. Please understand that this was not an easy decision to make, and we are burdened by those affected by the virus, and for the crisis that it has caused in the world. As we decided what to do, our Elders were compelled by Paul’s words in Romans 12:17, “give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.”
We are also thinking through ways we can care for one another, in particular for those who are more vulnerable to the virus, such as those who are elderly and immunocompromised. We plan to contact these folks in our church community soon. If you have ideas for how we can care for those both inside and outside the church community please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. And please do let us know if you have significant needs at this time that we can help you with.
When Paul was imprisoned and the church could not gather corporately, he testified to the truth that our setbacks can actually be God’s advances. He wrote in Philippians 1:12–14: “I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ. And most of the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.”
There is much the Lord can do in this time, if we will be intentional and not waste the unique opportunities he brings our way.
We will continue to monitor the latest news and recommendations released by the CDC, state, and/or city officials. And we will be in touch with any updates as we can. From our perspective, much is unknown. From God’s perspective, all is known. Would you pray with us for the continued health and growth of Imprint Church and all the Lord’s churches in the area, that our love and lack of fear in uncertain times might be a shining witness for Jesus Christ, our only true hope?