27 March 2020

Dear friends,

In these desperate times we need each other more than ever, and we need to be able to express to God our confusion, fear, faith, hope and love – learning in these situations what it means:
*  to know we are loved by God;
*  to love God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength, and;
*  to love our neighbour as ourselves.

We are incredibly privileged to be living in a great community with access to amazing technology, and with an amazing (but incredibly stretched) health care service. As a church we’ve run a series of successful experiments with “Zoom” video conferencing software on various digital devices to facilitate virtual meetings for small groups, drop-ins, 1:1’s and our Sunday morning service. In the space of just 10 days nearly everyone in the church has gone from “never heard of Zoom” to having connected with at least one other person or attending a virtual meeting.

In our first online Sunday Service, on 22 March, we were joined by current and former members of our congregation in Hardwick, nearby villages, Bury St Edmunds, Southampton and Tasmania … and from someone who was ill in bed (with their video feed switched off). The lockdown enabled us to meet with those who, in normal circumstances, wouldn’t have been able to join us.  It has been great to strengthen relationships in the family of God, with “brothers and sisters” as well as with our heavenly Father.

We would love to be able to open these meetings to the general public so that anyone can join a meeting (or watch a live-stream), just as they could when we meet in person in Hardwick Primary School.  And this is very much our aim.  First we need to consider the safeguarding implications of doing this and put in place the relevant measures to protect and respect everyone as best we can.  We also need to experiment and learn more about providing good content that works in this new format of Sunday morning service, and that includes the interaction and mutual support in our Christian faith and life which is part of being community together. It would be great to have something ready for open invitation to join with us on Easter Sunday morning as we celebrate the day when Jesus rose from the dead and “turned the world upside down”.

So, please stay safe and why not TryPraying?

Hope to see you soon.


Hardwick Evangelical Church

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