Dear Leidy’s Church Members and Friends:
Warm greetings to you in Jesus’ name. We are living in unprecedented times. All of us are experiencing bewilderment, fear, anxiety, speculations, and a general loss of stability. We are out of our normal routines and don’t know when “normality” will return, or what the new “normality” will look like. How shall we respond? What shall we do? We don’t know all those answers, but here are eight ways how we at Leidy’s Church purpose to think and do.
First, we need to hold onto the fact that God is the Lord and not a breeze blows apart from His will. We will stand and reflect on the truth of Psalm 18:1-3
“I love You, O Lord, my strength.”
The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge;
My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,
And I am saved from my enemies.
The Lord Jesus is still saying to us, His disciples today, what He said to His disciples just prior to His ascension: All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. [Matt. 28:18] Even in this present crisis, He is the One who holds all authority and we should, we must, trust in Him. Let that be bedrock upon which we rest and from which we go forward in this life.
Second, Sunday services of worship and Sunday School at Leidy’s Church have been suspended for the remainder of March. We hope the situation will have changed so that public worship can take place on Palm Sunday and Easter, which are the first two Sundays of April. We are prepared, however, to continue in suspended mode for as long as the governmental authorities say such is necessary. We understand those authorities are functioning in the sphere of responsibility designated to them by God. They are not telling us we cannot preach the gospel; they are saying if congregations continue to gather for corporate worship that doing so poses a significant health threat to the wider community.
Third, we plan to livestream worship on Sunday mornings at 10am. You may access this via our website at www.leidyschurch.org. We will begin at 9:30 with some pre-recorded music and movement within our facility so that everyone has time to make sure they have the right things in place to receive and hear the livestream. At 10 the service will begin. It will not be a regular service but will include many of our normal elements. Announcements and updates of interest will be given. There will be prayers and confession. We will have music. There will be reading of the Word of God and a normal Sunday sermon. We’ve not done this before, so all we’ve proposed to do is subject to change as we get our feet wet! But we do believe it is important for us maintain our worship before and to the Lord.
Fourth, it is hoped that we will be able to post daily devotional thoughts and a prayer on our website. This will help us stay properly focused during these challenging times.
Fifth, our church doors will remain open on weekdays during normal business hours, that is, Monday through Friday from 9am to 4:30pm. If you need to come past the church for something, someone will be here. We will be disinfecting door handles and bathroom fixtures and other common surfaces repeatedly throughout each day. Hand sanitizing materials will be on-hand and we ask you to make use of them when you enter and when you leave.
Sixth, for those who are shut-in or elderly or otherwise have specific needs, you are encouraged to contact any of the Pastoral Staff, your Shepherd, or the church office and we will render whatever assistance is possible. If you don’t have sufficient information to make contact, the church office number is 215-723-8707 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and you’ll receive the contact information you need.
Seventh, we will continue to pay our bills and seek to meet our other obligations even though we’re not collecting an offering each week. To be able to do so will require our members and friends to continue giving as normal. On-line giving is an option on our website. Or, some may prefer to mail in their offering envelopes. Already some folk have stopped by and dropped off their offering in person at the office. Regardless how you do so, we ask you to continue giving your faithful tithes and offerings.
Eighth, we urge each of us to be in prayer for God’s mercy on our land and the lands of the world. We see afresh just how fragile our grip on life is. If you would like to come by the church to pray, you’re welcome to do that. This is a time when the Holy Spirit is challenging everyone to think about matters of life and death, of the judgment to come, and of our eternal destinies. It is not a time to be angry with God, but a time to repent and seek His forgiveness and mercy and goodness.
Faithfully in Christ,
John H.C. Niederhaus, Pastor
David G. Reich, Consistory President