Let us not give up the habit of meeting together, as some are doing. Instead, let us encourage one another all the more, since you see that the Day of the Lord is coming nearer. HEBREWS 10:25
So many have reached out to share their support and some to share frustrations with our church. We understand the misperception. Frankly, we have been so focused on continuing to provide comfort and support for our members and surrounding communities during this incredible time of stress, that we failed to fully communicate.
We agree that we must all comply with Governor DeWine’s administrative order and we are taking all necessary precautions to ensure the health and safety of anyone who comes to Solid Rock Church. We have scaled back our normal services; and there are not large numbers of worshipers in the facility, but we are open and continuing to practice and sustain our faith.
Fortunately, our facility is large enough that we are able to easily ensure that everyone who is physically in the facility is practicing the physical distancing; we are providing additional cleaning and hand sanitizing stations; and we are holding some services outside to allow for more distance. We have canceled any youth activities; we are encouraging older members to stay home and access services electronically. We are not shaking hands or greeting members with hugs. There is no collection or communion in a normal sense, just prayer and worship. Our protocols are such that there is no contact. And we also use this time to educate and inform everyone on the best practices.
We are so grateful that Governor DeWine provided for places of worship in his Order, so it did not infringe on people’s religious liberties or the First Amendment. We can assure everyone that the health and wellbeing of our members, staff and community is critical and the top priority. Yet after prayer and spiritual reflection, we made the decision not to close our church for those who need it because right now faith communities play a vital role for our members and especially the most vulnerable. We are meeting that need but doing so in a way to ensure that it does not put people in harm’s way.
These are the following actions we have taken:
We also acknowledge that this will be difficult for some people to understand, and that many people will make judgements based on limited information, but we believe that in a time of unfathomable crisis, as faith- based leaders we are called to meet the needs of our community and to address the fear and anxiety of those who rely on faith. These acts of service are an essential part of sustaining our faith and provide an essential service for our church community.
We are grateful for the strong leadership of Dr. Acton, Lt. Governor Husted and Governor DeWine and pray for their continued wisdom. We continue to ask God to be with our members, our community, Ohio, our nation and our world.