Coronavirus update: March 30
Hi, church family. Hope your week is off to a great start. We want to let you know what will be going on during the week digitally at church.
Tuesday morning: Devotional on Facebook (facebook.com/alcgrapevine).
Tuesday night: Digital prayer meeting, from 7:00-7:30 p.m. You will receive a text Tuesday morning with a Zoom link for joining the meeting. If you do not receive a text tomorrow morning, email Angela at email@example.com.
Wednesday night: Bible Q&A with Pastor Jason on Facebook Live, 7:00 p.m. If you have a question you’d like answered, you can post it during the Q&A in the comments section or send it ahead of time to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday morning: Devotional on Facebook.
Coronavirus update: March 28
Hi, all. Hope you're able to enjoy this beautiful Saturday weather.
As promised, here is the link to our Worship Service for Sunday morning: https://vimeo.com/event/31065. If you have any issues joining the service tomorrow morning, we'll be on our social media accounts to help. We'll also post any necessary updates on our social media.
See you at 10:15 a.m. tomorrow!
Coronavirus update: March 26
Hi, church family. Miss being with all of you in person, but I did enjoy the opportunity to see some of you Tuesday night for the drive-and-pray/drive-through communion. Here is helpful information for this week:
1. This Sunday’s service will again be online only. We are working on a new platform for our livestream, so here is the simplest thing for you to do Sunday to join the service: Go to alcgrapevine.com that morning and click on “Watch Online” near the top of the page (computer) or in your menu bar (mobile device/tablet). When we have a new link that you can go directly to and bookmark, we will email you that link before Sunday as well as post on our social media accounts. But you can count on going to our website and clicking on “Watch Online.” All sermons are archived at alcgrapevine.com/media.
The online platform we started using two Sundays ago is built for churches, and they had 9,000 (!) new churches sign up the first week we transitioned to online. Their service has continued to grow, and the tremendous load on their end has been the source of our technical difficulties on Sunday mornings. But it’s awesome that so many churches are discovering new ways to reach people during this time.
2. We need to change the number we previously gave you for submitting your regular tithes and offering by text. To text, send the amount you would like to give to the number “84321.” You will receive a reply text with further instructions. As a reminder, you can give online at alcgrapevine.com/give or by mail to our physical address: 1520 W. Wall St., Grapevine, TX 76051.
See you online Sunday – God bless!
Coronavirus update: March 19
Hi, church family. This is the first of our emails you’ll receive each Thursday to communicate any updates. Here is helpful information for this week:
1. Sunday’s service will again be online at this same link we used last week. If you miss all or part of the live service, we’ll post ASAP on social media a link to the service. All sermons are archived at alcgrapevine.com/media.
2. In case you missed this announcement, a decision to return to services on our campus will be communicated by Thursday of that week. Today, Gov. Abbott banned all gatherings of more than 10 people in our state through April 3.
3. The drive-and-pray that we started on Tuesday night will be a weekly occurrence. Plan on meeting in the church parking lot at 6 p.m. on Tuesdays to receive a route to drive around our cities and hospitals and pray for our communities and medical workers.
4. We’ll continue to collect canned meats to help meet the need at GRACE’s Food Pantry. Food can be dropped off at the church office. For now, at least one person is usually at the office during regular office hours, but you can call our main number at (817) 329-0454 to make sure we’ll be here when you come by.
5. Pastor Jason and I recorded a podcast with Dr. Rachel Kennedy about coronavirus. Rachel provided great, practical, medical information about the virus, including how to prevent its spread and what people should do if they believe they are experiencing its symptoms. The episode is 35 minutes long, and you can listen here.
We love you and miss seeing you in person. We’re already looking forward to being able to meet together again.
Coronavirus update: March 17
The “News and Updates” on our website is the central hub for information. All news and updates communicated to the church as a whole are posted and archived there. Go to alcgrapevine.com and click on “News and Updates.” If you want to bookmark the page, the direct link is alcgrapevine.com/news.
Emails: We want to honor your Inbox. :) We know you are receiving many emails during this time, and we do not want to add to the list. You can expect one or two church-wide emails per week from us, unless events warrant additional communication. On Thursdays, you will receive a weekly update from us that will serve as our main source of information. You also could receive an email early in the week that would contain information following up on our Sunday services, such as providing details for ministry opportunities that are announced during the service. If you need to be added to our email subscription list, contact Angela Bell at email@example.com.
Social media: In addition to our standard posts, our social media platforms will be utilized to communicate urgent news, short bits of information and links to updates to our News and Updates page. You can follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at @alcgrapevine.
eNews: Our weekly eNews that is delivered on Wednesdays is on hold in order to limit the number of emails you receive from us.
Online services are accessible live at alcgrapevine.online.church. After a live service has concluded, that service will be posted to our YouTube channel (@alcgrapevine). When the process of converting the live service to YouTube has completed, we will post the YouTube link on our social media accounts. Our @alcgrapevine channel will serve as our archive for all broadcasts. Sermon audio will continue to be posted at alcgrapevine.com/media and at soundcloud.com/jasonkennedy55.
A decision to return to in-person services will be communicated by Thursday of that week. When will we return to our in-person services? As we did in moving our March 15 service to online only, we will continue to follow all government requirements and give proper consideration to government requests. Our standard for resuming in-person services will remain the same as when we made the decision to transition to online-only: the safety and health of our church family.
LET’S GLOW CRAZY
Our annual glow-in-the-dark Easter egg hunt has been rescheduled for Friday, June 26. An Easter egg hunt in the summer? Of course! If some people have a Christmas in July, why not have an Easter egg hunt in June? We don’t like that kids in our communities missed out on hunting Easter eggs, so we’ve worked with our contracted vendors to hold Let’s Glow Crazy on June 26.
Our pastor-on-call weekly rotation remains in place. Also unchanged is our structure of Connect Groups serving as our “first responders” when care is needed. If you have a need, contact your small group leader, and they will then make our staff aware of your needs. If you do not belong to a Connect Group, you can make us aware of any needs for pastoral care by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling our main number, (817) 329-0454.
PASSION TO PASSOVER
As we monitor the coronavirus situation, we are working to provide alternatives for our annual Passion to Passover celebration on Good Friday (April 10).
Because of the significance of Easter Sunday, we are exploring ways to keep our Easter service a service that you can invite friends and family to attend with you—regardless of how we need to define “attend” at that time.
At this point, decisions whether small groups will meet in homes are left up to the groups themselves. Current recommendations discouraging any meetings of at least 10 people should be taken into consideration. If group leaders have any questions or need guidance, contact our Connect Groups pastor, David Thomas, at email@example.com.
KIDS and YOUTH
Parents of ALC Kids and ALC Students will receive regular communications from those departments. These communications are not sent church wide. If you do not already receive those updates, contact Tanya Ryan (firstname.lastname@example.org) for ALC Kids or Brinly Foxall (email@example.com) for ALC Students.
The annual Business Meeting scheduled for Sunday, March 29, has been postponed. A new date will be set as soon as possible. Our bylaws require that for the Annual Meeting and any Special Business Meetings, due notice shall be given in all services on the two Sundays immediately prior to the meeting date. When we have rescheduled the meeting, we will communicate the new date in line with our bylaws and through our typical means.
First, we thank God for our church’s financial health entering this time of uncertainty!
Second, we recommend three ways of submitting your regular tithes and offering during this time: online, by text and by mail. Online payments can be made at alcgrapevine.com/give. About 60 percent of our church family currently makes payments online, and that method has proved both safe and convenient. For help in creating an online account, contact Angela Bell (firstname.lastname@example.org). Offerings and tithes can also be submitted by texting “ALCGRAPEVINE” to the number 77977. By mail, we recommend sending checks rather than cash. The church address is 1520 W. Wall St., Grapevine, TX 76051.
For the health of our staff and their families, they have been encouraged to work remotely as much as possible. As a result, office hours will be fluid. If you need to come to our office, we recommend that you first call Angela Bell at (817) 329-0454 to make sure our office is open. Although traffic in and out of our office has been reduced, we realize that there might be instances in which it is best to drop off something at our office door to be picked up by a staff member. Please make sure someone is here before leaving anything at our office door.
Any questions outside of those above with specified contacts should be directed to David Thomas at email@example.com or through our main number (817) 329-0454.
Coronavirus update: March 16
Hi, church family. Interesting weekend, huh? Thanks to all who joined us live online Sunday morning and for those who watched our service later. You’ll receive an email tomorrow that addresses the bigger questions as we move forward. But I want to send these items to you in a timely manner.
1. This upcoming Sunday morning’s service will be online again, just like yesterday’s.
2. From 9 a.m. to noon tomorrow (Tuesday), you can drop off pre-packaged breakfast items we are collecting to help feed GCISD students while they are out of school. Drive underneath the cover at the front doors to the main building, and your items will be collected there. Items that you can give: nut-free granola bars, Pop-Tarts, juice boxes, Graham crackers, fruit cups, crackers, chips and cookies.
3. At that same time (9 a.m.-noon), you can drop off canned meats for GRACE’s Food Pantry. I visited the Food Pantry this morning to ask their needs and was told, “Keep doing what you are doing with the canned meats, and bring more if you can.” GRACE is boxing meals that includes the canned meats we provide.
4. A drive-and-pray is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday. We will drive around our cities and hospitals, and pray for our communities and our medical workers. Meet at the church parking lot at 6 o’clock, and you will be given a route to drive and pray for.
5. For those who have asked how to give your regular tithes and offerings, the two best current options are to submit online or send a check (no cash) by mail to the church’s address: 1520 W. Wall St., Grapevine, TX 76051.
6. Pastor Jason and I recorded a podcast today with Dr. Rachel Kennedy. Rachel provided great, practical medical advice concerning coronavirus. You can listen to our podcast at alcgrapevine.com/podcast.
Again, look for a more comprehensive email tomorrow that will cover a broader range of topics. In the meantime, feel free to send me any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coronavirus update: March 14
Hi, Abundant Life family. Thank you very much for your patience, flexibility, understanding and prayers over the past couple of days.
Here are our plans for Sunday morning: We will broadcast a live service at 10:15 a.m. that you can access at alcgrapevine.online.church. We will have a time of worship followed by a message from Pastor Jason.
This will be a new experience for us as a church as well as the team currently working on the technology. If we experience any hiccups tomorrow morning, we will post status updates on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
We will not swamp you with emails moving forward, but we will keep you appropriately updated. You can expect a more comprehensive communication early next week. Remember, all updates will be posted at alcgrapevine.com/news.
Looking forward to seeing you online tomorrow!
Coronavirus update #2: March 13
Hi, Abundant Life family. As our email earlier today said, we are keeping close watch on the ever-changing circumstances surrounding the coronavirus threat.
After we sent that email, Tarrant County declared a local disaster because of a public health emergency connected to the coronavirus pandemic. As part of the declaration, county officials issued strong recommendations that events “of any size in which people will be in close contact with one another be canceled or postponed.”
In the interest of all our attendees’ safety and health, we will comply with that request. This Sunday morning, March 15, we will not gather together in person for our Worship Service as we had planned all week. Instead, we invite you to take part in an online service Sunday morning. We already were making plans to place our service online for those of you who had told us you would not be attending this weekend. As soon as possible, we will post all the pertinent information as to where and when to access our online service.
We love you, we care for you, and based on the information we have from our elected officials and medical experts, we made this decision out of concern for your health. We already have seen one church in our county in which some attendees were exposed to coronavirus. Thankfully, there have been no reports that any of those have tested positive for the virus, but some have been quarantined for two weeks. We do not want that scenario to play out within our church family.
Once we can pass along to you where and when to access our online service Sunday morning, we will communicate that to you. I’ve include our web page for updates and our social media account handles below.
This has been a strange week. Among all the changes , however, there is one thing that remains unchanged: God is in control and cares for each of us! Please continue to pray for our church attendees, our surrounding communities and our nation.
Website updates: alcgrapevine.com/news
Facebook, Instagram and Twitter: @alcgrapevine
Coronavirus update: March 13
Hi, church family. We, like you, have been closely monitoring the evolving circumstances concerning coronavirus, and we want to share our plans with you as of late Friday morning.
First, we will hold our Worship Service this week. We’ll meet at 10:15 a.m. as usual, and as we do around certain holidays, we will have a one-hour service. Our Sunday morning classes already had their Spring Break scheduled and were not going to meet. So we will have a service only this weekend, and we will not have our standard greeting time and are changing how we collect the offering.
We also have implemented other precautionary steps and processes in response to the virus that will not be obvious to you, including extra, thorough cleanings of our facility.
Second, we have been working this week on technological options for making services available online. At a minimum, we will expedite posting audio of this Sunday morning’s sermon following the service. We will post the sermon ASAP on all our social media accounts, as usual. If you are not on social media or would prefer an email notification when the sermon is available, send your email address to me at email@example.com, and I will email you a link to the sermon along with sermon notes.
We know that some of you belong to groups classified as higher risk for contracting coronavirus. Although there is no replacement for the community we experience on Sunday mornings, we are working diligently on ways for you to stay connected with your church family if you are not feeling well or believe it is in your best interest to remain home until the coronavirus threat subsides.
To help reduce the spread of coronavirus, we ask that you follow these steps recommended by the CDC for protecting yourself and others: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/prevention.html
Last, but most important, please continue to pray for our church attendees, our surrounding communities and our nation. In a time of uncertainty such as this, we can find peace and comfort in the knowledge that God invites us in 1 Peter 5:7 to cast all our anxieties on Him because He cares for us!
We will keep you informed as circumstances progress. All future updates will be posted at alcgrapevine.com/news as well as communicated through email and our social media accounts. Also, please feel free to email me at the above address with any questions.