Covid-19 Response

May 14, 2020

Friends,

I wanted you to know that we are praying for you deeply. I know that each of you has had a different journey through quarantine. While I know my own hardships, I cannot begin to imagine what a trial this has been for you.

For the last four years I have been overwhelmed by the love that I and thousands of people have found at A&M UMC. That love has not been quarantined. In fact, I believe that it is stronger today than it has ever been in the last 100 years of our church life. We are confident of why we are here, and we are certain of the hope of Jesus Christ.

This has been a long road and we have further to go. While we are not certain of what is ahead, we have been working hard to prepare the church to be reopened. We have been meeting consistently with the leadership of our church and staff to evaluate what the road may look like. We have purchased hand sanitizers and new cleaning systems to get ready for a restart within the church.

Our Bishop, the State of Texas, and Brazos County have all released guidelines of what they want to see as churches begin to reopen. Our Church leaders are putting together a plan of protocols that follow the released guidelines for how to help keep our congregation safe upon reopening.

I hope to have a date for reopening our great Church soon. In the meantime, we will continue to offer online church. God is working in our lives, the Love of Jesus is being shared, and hope is not lost. For God is good. All the time, even in this time.

Grace and Peace,

Preston

March 13, 2020

Dear A&M United Methodist Church Family,

Howdy! In recent weeks through our “Letting Go” Lenten Sermon Series, we have been exploring how to let go of control and fear. It is obvious that God has been preparing us for the challenges we are facing today. We want to care for our congregation in all respects, including the physical well-being of our community.

As our plan of action, we are changing the way that we meet together and invite you to join us online for worship this Sunday by watching and interacting on our live-stream services. We will not be meeting in-person this week. All activities at the church for this week have been postponed until further notice. Our staff will be available by phone and email. To that end, we are asking you, our congregants, to take precautions to keep yourself and others safe, especially in light of recent developments with the coronavirus (COVID-19).

By now your life has been disrupted in major ways as our community gatherings have been canceled. In a conference call today with the CEO of the Methodist Hospital System, we learned that one of the foundational reasons for these actions is that there is real evidence that rapid, aggressive action on the part of the community is very effective in “flattening the curve” of cases. In other words, if we all do our part, there is evidence that we can reduce the impact of this virus on our healthcare system and, in turn, our community.

Here is what we need you to do to keep our church community connected and growing:
We will be connecting and engaging with you through our social network platforms such as our YouTube page, Facebook, and Instagram. You can watch our worship services every Sunday, as well as view other content that we will be pushing out for bible studies on all of these platforms.
Let our church staff know how we can pray for you and your family during this time. You can fill out this prayer request form that goes directly to our staff.
Download the AMUMC App and turn-on push notifications so you can have the most up-to-date info about closures, gatherings, and news from our pastors.
Stay at home when you or a family member are sick.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
Cover your sneeze or cough with a tissue or your arm.
Get in the habit of NOT touching your face so often.
Forgo shaking hands at church for a wave or a friendly smile.
If you or someone you know tests positive for COVID-19, please let us know so we can find a way to help, pray for everyone involved and take any necessary precautions here at A&M UMC.

Christ calls us to live life in community, that we are a connected body of Christ. He also teaches that we have a responsibility to the most vulnerable in our communities. Most of the time we live this out by visiting the sick, gathering together in worship, prayer, and service. Therefore, it is very odd to consider that, during this unprecedented moment, being faithful in community actually calls us to NOT do these things. It feels very backwards. However, we have an opportunity to be a part of positive change. With so many things happening that are out of our control, it is nice to be able to act together to help the broader community.

The uncertainty of this outbreak is creating anxiety in our workplaces, schools, and day-to-day activities. Yet we remain certain of God’s steadfast presence and careful attention to all that is happening. Please join us in praying for those who are affected by this illness, as well as their caregivers and those who are working around the clock to minimize the impact of this virus.

In Psalm 46, we are reminded that it is God who is our refuge and strength, and our ever-present help in trouble. Therefore, let us not fear, but with confidence use this opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus through our prayers and our care for others.

Grace & Peace,

Rev. Preston Greenwaldt & Rev. Katy Haislet