Sunday Worship on Facebook
9:00 & 11:00 a.m.
View event info
The Session, at its June meeting, approved a multi-phased re-opening plan presented by the Safety Task Force. The church is currently in Phase A.
There are still a few areas to be addressed including the Sardis Weekday School, singing activities, sports activities, and overnight activities. Once the guidance for those areas is in place, it will be communicated to you.
Sardis will move to Phase B one week after the governmental guidelines allow for mass gatherings of 50 or fewer people. We will use whichever guidance is the strictest between the state, county, and city. Information about future phases will be communicated after we know when we will move to that phase and what government restrictions have been announced for it. On-line worship will continue even when we move to phases that allow worshipers to be present in person.
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth with rules to govern creation, turning chaos into order. In the same way, God gave rules for the humans in creation to follow in order that we might live as a healthy community. The Law of God in the Old Testament is designed to promote love for God and for one another. Many of those rules are about Public Health. Some of the particular rules in the ancient Public Health code don’t really address our contemporary context. Still, behind all of them, we find the great truth that decisions we make should express our love for God by valuing all life and ensuring good spiritual, emotional, and physical health for all God’s children. In the New Testament, Jesus even broke the ancient understanding of “Keeping the Sabbath” in order to heal someone. Rules change with context. Until very recently, the primary act of “Keeping the Sabbath” for Christians was showing up in person for worship on Sundays.
We find ourselves in a context calling for some new rules to ensure the protection of the ancient truths of faith, love, and health. You may not know that Sardis Presbyterian has a Safety Task Force that has been operating as a sub-committee of the Administration Ministry for several years. They have been considering and acting upon all sorts of potential threats to health on campus, including things like fire, child and vulnerable adult safety, and communicable disease. We are blessed to have had them in place already with a head start on thoughts about rules during a pandemic. They have been particularly busy learning and thinking lately!
North Carolina could be moving into its Phase 2 plan for reopening very soon. However, Sardis will take a very cautious approach to reopen campus activities out of concern for the health of our members and community. The Safety Task Force is working on a flexible and adaptable phased reopening plan for Session to consider and will communicate that to you in the future.
While state and local government guidelines are important in our plan to reopen, the Task Force has also consulted several medical professionals within the Sardis community and an infectious disease physician here in Charlotte, as well as other churches in our community and cleaning supply vendors.
With these conversations in mind, the Session has unanimously approved a recommendation from the Safety Task Force to continue the church campus closure through at least June 30 with exceptions for outdoor “transient” activities (such as drop-off food drives), worship recording activities, and essential activities by the staff. This closure extends to at least July 31 for all on-campus children and youth activities. Our online worship will continue as well as virtual ways to praise, learn, love, serve, share, and witness.
We wanted to communicate with you the following changes to some preschool and children’s summer programming:
Your health matters to God. Your neighbors’ health matters to God. God’s rules are designed as expressions of such love. These decisions made by the Session of Sardis Presbyterian Church are designed as expressions of our love for one another, too. I pray that such expressions may be made in person soon. But even for now, Sardis Presbyterian Church is not closed! The buildings may be closed, but Church is not a building. It is a community of people following Christ in faith and faithful activity. We are still Exploring Faith. Changing Lives.
Peace, Health, Hope,
The Rev. Dr. Joe B. Martin
March 2020 Update
"The church is not just a building" has been running through our minds during this time as, after much thought, prayer, and discernment, we have made the difficult but necessary decision to suspend all church activities until further notice. Ministry continues at Sardis Presbyteian, it just looks a little different in our new virtual reality. Please note some of these updates:
9:00 & 11:00 a.m.
View event info
View event info
Urban Ministry Center needs donations and Amazon wishlist items.
Loaves & Fishes needs volunteers and donations.