Whether we’re talking about working from home, cancelled travel plans, or school this fall, the the whirlwind of COVID continues to bring disruption and uncertainty to our lives. Which leads to this question…
What will Park Church look like for the fall and winter of 2020?
Keep reading, and find out below!
SUNDAY WORSHIP GATHERINGS
Gathering regularly for worship as a response of gratitude to God is something followers of Jesus have always done. And we’re not going to stop now – even when it means gathering virtually! Here’s a snapshot of what you can expect this fall:
- We will continue producing high quality Park@Home videos.
- We will continue gathering at 9:30 AM every Sunday at 312 Hance Avenue for outdoor worship as long as weather permits. This will likely continue through October (or until it gets too cold). We will continue taking all necessary COVID safety measures, including: social distancing, mandatory masks unless in place for worship, digital service programs, and more.
- With the uncertainty of a potential COVID surge this fall/winter (which would likely mean increased state restrictions for indoor gatherings), there’s a good chance we will be going back to Park@Home videos only during the winter. These are things we will be monitoring closely and will keep you updated!
We’re excited to be relaunching Community Groups this September! Perhaps now more than ever, personal connection is vital for faith and life – and that’s just what Community Groups offer us. We’d love for you to be part of a Group this fall and experience the kind of connection that grows our faith as it enriches our lives.
- Contact Matt Agresti to join a Group (firstname.lastname@example.org), and visit parkchurchnj.com/groups for more info.
- This fall, the Groups will have a more flexible format and meeting cadence to meet the challenges of COVID.
- Groups will “meet” weekly in a way that best meets the situation of the Group members (ie, virtual or socially distant in-person).
- Groups will officially kick off during the week of September 20th, but we encourage you to join one now for ongoing events and connection.
Park Kids loves partnering with parents to equip and come alongside them to help their kids and students develop an authentic faith. This fall, we will launch new or refreshed virtual experiences for kids and families to help foster relationships and deepen discipleship. We may not be able to be together physically, but you aren’t in this alone.
- Park Kids Zoom Classes will be more focused by age/grade level in the fall.
- All Zooms will be in the afternoons once school is over.
- Park Kids will host a monthly in person or virtual event while we are still not able to meet in person.
- Park Kids will launch a private Facebook group so that families can stay connected to one another, Park Kids, and Park Church. This will include videos and posts about discipleship, opportunities to share photos of Park Kids @ Home, Orange resources, and more.
- Park Kids values your prayers but needs your service to sign up to serve or start the conversation about what that could look like for the fall/winter you can fill out this quick survey.
MIDDLE SCHOOL GROUP (MSG)
MSG is so excited to start back up on September 9th! Our team cannot wait to show your students what actively living out the love of Christ looks like. Here’s a snapshot of what our nights will look like:
- We will meet outdoors from 6-8 every Wednesday (weather permitting). The building will be open for bathroom use, but a mask needs to be worn when going inside. If weather changes throughout the night, we will move indoors to the sanctuary where masks will be worn by students and leaders.
- Until further notice, we will not be sharing meals together at MSG. Instead, we will be sharing prepackaged snacks and drinks in the beginning of the night! Leaders take this time to catch up with the students and hear what is going on in their lives.
- After snacks it is game time! To make games more COVID friendly, we will not be using shared objects during games. The team is at work coming up with creative, object-free, and socially distant games!
- Leaders will continue to give talks at the end of the night. For the first few weeks, leaders will be taking turns sharing with the students a little bit about themselves and their faith story.
- Contact Jenny Streich, MSG Coordinator, with any questions.
We do not currently have events planned on the weekends for the fall or winter. The leaders will continue to talk and figure out ways to best connect with your students during this school year.
HIGH SCHOOL GROUP (HSG)
This fall/winter we are so excited to celebrate being together again. This year we are going to where the students are and walking alongside them through this time of uneasiness. Showing them along the way that we all mess up but still are loved by Christ.
- This year we are excited to show the students what community in Christ is all about and why it is so important.
- We are so happy to welcome Sammy Andrews and Jenna Gregor to our leadership team.
- We are changing things up this year and meeting outdoors for the fall and indoors with masks when weather is poor.
- As a team this year, we are thinking about new and exciting ways to reach out and stay connected to students.
- The team is continually discussing how we can best adapt to the reality of COVID – especially when it comes to things like meals, games, events, and worship.
- The first set of talks this year is going to be on the value of community. More specifically, we will discuss loving (welcoming), togetherness, encouragement, support, difficulties, and loving God’s creation (each other).
- Contact Anthony Santiago, HSG Coordinator, with any questions.
STARTING NOW: A COLLEGE BOOK STUDY
College is hard. This can help. We know that the first year or two of college can be a very difficult transition for many people. It’s a unique time in life where people make all kinds of decisions about who they want to be as they become independent for the first time. It’s also a unique time in life where people can really lean in to who God made them to be. That’s what we’ll explore together in our college book group.
- If you are a college student who wants to figure out life with us, we’d love for you to come to this weekly group starting in September.
- It will be led by Anthony Santiago and Rebecca Delucia.
- Let us know you’re planning on being a part of the group so we can order you a book! Contact Rebecca Delucia to let her know, or if you have any questions about it.
If you’re reading this and wondering, “What’s Park Cares?” We’re glad you’re asking that! We’d love for you to learn more about this vital ministry right here. Here’s a snapshot for what this fall will look like:
- The Park Cares support team is available to meet with you if you are in any need of pastoral care or support – or for any reason. Contact Brian Croak to connect today.
- A webinar this fall, on a topic such as incarnational listening skills or clean fighting.
- More collaboration with Community Group leaders for support of offline conversations with members who need additional support.