(Last updated March 29th, 2020; this page will be updated with more current information as it becomes available)
Bay Vista has decided to alter our schedule during this pandemic,
out of an abundance using an appropriate level of caution and to protect our more vulnerable members.
In-Person Schedule Adjustments
- All Sunday activities through April 17th are canceled; regular Sunday activities will resume on April 19th. See below for links to service resources for each Sunday we miss:
- All Wednesday evening activities will not meet until after our first Sunday back.
- The church office will be open normal hours (Monday-Thursday, 8:30am to 1pm).
- The family ministry fellowship on March 21st is postponed. (added March 16th)
- Joe Agustin’s memorial service on March 23rd is postponed, and the fellowship meal following is canceled. (changed March 19th)
- The Crusader luncheon on April 7th is canceled.
- The Maundy Thursday service on April 9th is canceled; on Holy Wednesday, April 8th, we will post Scriptures and a plan for families to fellowship around the table in their homes. (updated March 29th)
- For any regularly-scheduled committee meeting, contact the chairman of that committee.
- The church leadership will meet again around April 12th to evaluate this schedule based on current projections. (added March 29th)
- Sermons for each week will be available on this site each Sunday morning (instead of the usual Monday post date).
- Each sermon will be accompanied by a link to a set of songs that will help you worship and prepare your heart to listen to the message.
- Sunday School lessons will be shared here and on our Facebook page for personal study and family discussion.
- Please continue tithing, as the expenses to keep Bay Vista running will not noticeably decrease during this period. Tithes can be dropped off at the chuch office when it is open, or mailed to the address at the bottom of this page.
- Worship Arts groups will be contacted by their group leaders to address adjusting for the loss of rehearsal time.
Why We Made This Decision
This virus appears to have a light to moderate effect on healthy people; however, in older people, or those whose immune systems are already compromised, its effects have been much greater. People who are barely affected can spread the virus to those whose bodies are much less well-equipped to fight it off. While it is true, as Paul told Timothy, that “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but one of power, love, and sound judgment” (2 Timothy 1:7, CSB), our Lord also told us to “be wise as serpents and innocent as doves” (Matthew 10:16, ESV). With Mississippi’s governor’s decree prohibiting gatherings of 10 or more until April 17th, and with scientific estimates that the curve is trending up, we are following his guidance. We also trust in the sovereignty of God, that He will still be able to use us to accomplish His will, encourage one another, and draw the lost to Him.
An Encouraging Word
Martin Luther, the German reformer, served during the time of the Black Plague. Following are his words written to Dr. John Hess (taken from his Works, volume 43, page 132):
I shall ask God mercifully to protect us. Then I shall fumigate, help purify the air, administer medicine and take it. I shall avoid places and persons where my presence is not needed in order not to become contaminated and thus perchance inflict and pollute others and so cause their death as a result of my negligence. If God should wish to take me, He will sure find me and I have done what he has expected of me and so I am not responsible for either my own death or the death of others. If my neighbor needs me however I shall not avoid place or person by will go freely as stated above. See this is such a God-fearing faith because it is neither brash nor foolhardy and does not tempt God.
Our ministry does not stop over the next few weeks, and we pray that we look back and see that this has all been much ado about nothing.