Real Church (Part Five)

Our Conference theme for 2021 is Real Church. It only seemed appropriate to remind ourselves of what it truly means to be the church as we begin to walk through (what we hope is) post-pandemic. What we learned over the past year and more is that the church is not the building, it is not the programs, it is not the potlucks. No, the church is the living and breathing body of Christ, at work in our workplaces, our communities, and our homes. For the next few weeks we’ll be taking a closer look at some of the individual expressions of The Church within The Pacific Conference.

We asked each church to answer four simple questions. We’ll share their responses here.

Getting to Know Our Churches

The Dalles Evangelical Church (The Dalles, Oregon)

https://www.thedallesevangelicalchurch.org/

  1. Your Congregation’s Favorite Songs (for the moment):
    Here I Am To Worship, Mighty to Save, How Deep the Father’s Love for Us, Because He Lives
  2. What is a challenge you’ve faced in the local church because of the pandemic?
    Our largest challenge from the pandemic comes from the isolation Covid can create. We are continually working on ways to stay connected.
  3. What is a victory you’ve seen in the local church over the course of the pandemic?
    One victory that has come from the pandemic is the importance placed on staying connected as a church.
  4. Describe something special you’re planning for the summer:
    This summer we have had a BBQ on the fourth week of every month. This time of fellowship has been a blessing.

Labish Center Community Church (Labish, Oregon)

https://labishchurch.org/

  1. Your Congregation’s Favorite Songs (for the moment):
    10,000 Reasons, Amazing Grace – My Chains Are Gone, We Believe, Good Good Father, Oceans, Reckless Love
  2. What is a challenge you’ve faced in the local church because of the pandemic?
    Drop in attendance, dealing with constant logistic changes, and having to put on hold some opportunities. Attendance/continuing building personal relationship while not around anyone. Distance teaching of our courses which we also use as community outreach. And at council level, knowing which rules to follow and who’s authority to honor. Serving communion was challenging. Couldn’t hug or shake hands. How to honor governmental authority (Romans 13 with positive disposition. Social distancing/disinfecting logistics. Leadership determining how to implement guidelines while remaining in unity.
  3. What is a victory you’ve seen in the local church over the course of the pandemic?
    those that remain have been flexible and supportive. I am seeing God growing individuals in news ways and we are learning as a church to see and seek God’s Awe and Wonder in our lives. We are still here. No outbreaks at our church. Building a new roof and redoing the parking lot without debt. Creative solutions to celebrating communion (took bread and juice to congregant’s homes then had communion online together.) Only online worship for two months. Sermons now available online. Continued financial stability. Stayed true to our Vision/Mission. Adapted accordingly.
  4. Describe something special you’re planning for the summer:
    an all church Lake Party! Church-wide Lake Day! Resuming more courses this fall and winter. Praising God without masks and seeing smiles. (Edit: This was written after the June 30 release and prior to the August 13 reinstatement of mask requirements in Oregon.) volcanoes Baseball Game Night (x2).
Labish Center Community Church

Sodaville Evangelical Church (Sodaville, Oregon)

https://sodavillechurch.org/

  1. Your Congregation’s Favorite Songs (for the moment):
    His Mercy Is More, He Will Hold Me Fast, I Will Wait for Him, Yet Not I But Christ in Me
  2. What is a challenge you’ve faced in the local church because of the pandemic?
    Waiting for the return of those still staying at home
  3. What is a victory you’ve seen in the local church over the course of the pandemic?
    The protection of God during the pandemic and the support of the faithful.
  4. Describe something special you’re planning for the summer:
    We planned for VBS but had to cancel because one of our people was exposed to C19.

Before You Go

Please add these churches to your prayer list as they lovingly serve their communities! (Please continue to pray for Supt. Randy and Linda while they are on sabbatical. They’re currently in Scotland with their family.)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s