Response and guidelines for the viral outbreak of COVID-19 Coronavirus
Challenging situations call for people of faith to act with precaution, but not panic. The best decisions result from faith, and not fear. The coronavirus did not surprise God, and he will direct us in how to handle it.
Tuesday, March 24, Update
Carolina Conference Office—The Mecklenburg County Board of Commissioners and the mayors of Charlotte, Matthews, Pineville, Mint Hill, Davidson, Huntersville and Cornelius have entered a proclamation for people to self-insolate in their homes to the maximum extent feasible in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.
This means that the Carolina Conference Office will be closed until further notice. Regular operations will continue, however. Our receptionist will also work from home, forwarding calls to each employee as she receives them.
As a food provider, the ACBC may remain open.
Monday, March 23, Update
Thursday, March 19, Update
Monday, March 16 Update
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It has been mandated in North Carolina that there be no gatherings of more than 100 people. The current CDC recommendation is that no gatherings of more than 50 attendees are to take place, and the President Trump just issued guidelines for the next 15 days which call on Americans to avoid social gatherings involving groups of 10 or more. We could see restrictions tightening even further over the coming days and weeks. After meeting with the Emergency Response Team of the Carolina Conference, your administration has asked that we release the following update.
Immediately suspend all gatherings and on-site worship services. Ministry does not have to stop while your doors are closed, so look at this as an opportunity to be creative. Perhaps something unexpected will bless your congregation that otherwise would not have happened!
Post signs on your doors outlining your plan for services, whether online or otherwise. Also post notifications on your website and social media.
Ensure that your church is properly set up for online giving or that other options for giving are shared with your members. If your church is not signed up for AdventistGiving online, please contact the treasury department.
Communicate with your members immediately, indicating the above.
Speak with your elders/leaders and develop a plan for reaching out to your members, especially those who are in poor physical condition or alone. Find ways to communicate words of hope and peace.
It is STRONGLY RECOMMENDED to:
Stream some kind of service online, whether you record a sermon the day before and upload it to your website, or organize a skeleton crew of participants to lead out in a live-streamed worship hour. YouTube is a free and easy option for live streaming. HERE is a link to one (of many) video tutorials if you would like to do it. (Note: DO NOT stream any music, whether performed live or pre-recorded. You could get your account deactivated and be slapped with a big fine.)
Stress online giving. As much as we hate to push this point, it is extremely important for the continued ministry of the Conference and your church that tithes and offerings are collected as usual. Highlight giving options in your communication to your members, and include links when possible to make responding easier.
At this time, in response to school closures in both North and South Carolina, we are requiring that all Adventist schools in the Conference be closed for at least one additional week following this week of spring break. This would mean that a return to school would not take place for students or teachers until at least March 30, 2020. If this changes, you will be notified. Your school may feel the need to extend this time due to conditions in your area.
Where possible, there will be continued learning at home by distance learning activities via the internet, or by sending books/assignments home physically, or by emailing assignments to students/parents.
The department directors and staff will continue to operate on a full-time basis to serve and lead our constituents.
Those who can work from home will be doing so, only coming in to the office as needed.
All face-to-face appointments will be canceled.
All Conference events of more than 50 people will be canceled through April, with an evaluation to be made on extending this timeframe.
Our switchboard will be operating as usual, so feel free to contact any of your ministry directors or administration.
Our prayers are with all of you as you navigate through this challenging situation. When the entire world comes to a halt, there is more time for reflection on our life priorities. Let’s use this opportunity to re-align those priorities with our Savior’s and finally finish the work! Praise God for His protection and providence. He will see us through!
Please refer to www.carolinasda.org for a full list of guidelines, and we will continue to send out and post updates as we have them. All of the cancelled events are listed there as well. If you would like to share the video presented by Gary Moyer on the home page of our website, you can find that link HERE.
Feel free to contact us with any questions.
Roku: Search Carolina Conference
For Children: Kathy’s Kids Storytime, at www.kathyskidsstorytime.org. Available on all podcasting outlets.
For Women: Joy in the Weeds. Available on nearly all podcasting outlets.
For Men: Walking Free. Available on nearly all podcasting outlets.
Camp Meeting: Carolina Conference Camp Meeting. Available on nearly all podcasting outlets.
For Young Adults, we have tons of online spiritual content on Project ReFresh at www.theprojectrefresh.org.