While many places in China continue to take precautions against the coronavirus pandemic, churches in some areas are resuming their in-person worship services. This article from Gospel Times highlights several churches that recently resumed worship services.
Some Churches Welcome Their First Physical Services Since the Pandemic!
In recent days some regions have announced the orderly reopening of religious venues, and some churches soon published announcements of reopening on their websites. Because the time of announcement and some preparatory work varied, a few churches have welcomed their first physical service since the pandemic.
According to the requirements of the state, although physical services have resumed, there needed to be controls over the number of participants. Therefore, whether it is churches that have already reopened, or churches preparing for reopening, all have adopted the use of reservations for worship, and have made comprehensive preparations for those entering the church for the service.
For example, a church in Suzhou made sufficient plans and preparations for reopening. On June 5, they published on their public WeChat account information related to their reopening including: methods of reservation, reservation times, services that can be reserved, requirements for reservations, and matters to note when attending the service.
This church even took care to record a video explaining the system for reservations and seat selection, as well as the process of entering the venue.
Finally, on June 7, some churches welcomed physical worship service.
Hanzhou Chongyi Church
Hanzhou Chongyi Church held their first resumed worship service on June 7. In the first and second services, Pastor Zhang preached on the topic of “Going to the Lord’s Temple,” and shared three points of whom to invite, what heart to bring, and for what reason to go. In the third and fourth services, Pastor Mingliang shared about being self-controlled and sober-minded, and how to count our blessings, through the topic “Praise of the Spirit.”
Currently, this church has only opened four Sunday services. All other gatherings and ministries from Monday through Saturday are delaying their opening.
Hangzhou Chengbei Church
Because of limits on the number of participants, this church prepared five services for the day of June 7. The church recommended that the first two services be open to elderly Christians with online reservations, each service allowing 100 attendees. The later three services are open to anyone with online reservations, allowing 260 attendees each. Each person may only make reservations for one service a day, and can help make reservations for elderly family members.
Pastor Wang preached on “How Majestic Is Your Name” during the first and second services, with Psalm 8 as the main passage. Pastor Li preached on “A Life of Prayer” during the third and fourth services, with 1 Thessalonians 1:2-3 as the main passage. At the same time, the messages were simultaneously streamed on WeChat.
Suzhou Dushuhu Christian Church has only resumed two Sunday services so far. Believers can make reservations on Friday, and reservations will end once fully booked. During this first physical worship service, Pastor Chen preached on “Waiting and Hope.”
Ningbo Holy Church
Ningbo Holy Church hosted two communion services. In the early service Pastor Chen preached on “Opening the Door of the Lord’s Temple.” In the later services Pastor Liu preached on “The Lord has Done Great Things for Us.” Both services were live streamed.
This church will continue holding communion services in the following week, so that every believer will have an opportunity to take communion. At the same time, the church will be transitioning the online course for new believers to a physical gathering.
A church in Nanjing Jiangning area also resumed physical worship on the 7th. At 7:00 in the morning, they began registration and temperature checks, scanning health codes, disinfecting, and orderly entry into the venue. The first service began at 8:30 a.m.
No doubt the first resumed worship services since the pandemic have brought great hope and comfort to all Christians.
As of now, the work of reopening churches has continued throughout the regions, and many churches are still preparing for reopening on the next Sunday, June 14. Together we pray that the pandemic will end quickly, and more churches will be able to welcome the day of reopening!
Original Article: 部分教堂迎来疫情下第一个实地礼拜！by Gospel Times (WeChat ID: gospeltimes)
Translated, edited, and reposted with permission.
Image credit: Gospel Times.
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