UPDATE: From the Elders

Hello Chapel Family, 

It seems that most things in our country at the moment are dominated by the news surrounding Covid, whether it’s the current spread of the virus, or the ongoing implications of the government decisions. Unfortunately, the Covid situation also has a significant impact on us as a church.  

Last week we asked for you to pray for us as elders as we started to face the decisions ahead of us, and we firstly want to thank you for your prayers and for your messages of support. We really do appreciate your support in prayer.

While there are many things still to consider in the coming weeks, one thing the eldership is fully united on is the fact that we will not be implementing a vaccine certificate or passport system for our Sunday services. We believe that implementing such a system would be a direct violation of James 2:1-4, and would go against the principle outlined in Galatians 3:28.

Therefore, when the traffic light system does come into effect in our region, we will be legally required to adhere to the numerical limits that have been outlined in that system. Of course, this means that the plans we had set in place for next year will be impacted. To what extent, we don’t yet know as there are many more details to be thought through.

Over the last week, our E-Team, elders and staff have all begun prayerfully communicating regarding the practical ways in which we can continue to be a faithful church under these coming restrictions. We are longing to get back together in person, although we’re not yet sure what that will look like.  And through it all, we desire to humbly submit to our government in all things--until doing so would disobey God’s clear commands. There is some time before the traffic light system comes into effect, but we will continue to keep you up to date with our thinking.

We also want to let you know that as an eldership we are looking to join a group of evangelical churches who are officially approaching our government and legal system to humbly request that they allow local churches to govern their own operation as a church, free from intrusion by central government legislation. The elders will meet to formally consider this on Monday evening.  

Finally, as we learnt from the book of Habakkuk earlier this year, God is sovereign over all things. We see throughout Scripture that God uses all things--including the evil deeds of man and of the devil--for our good and for His glory. Although the government’s announcement is disheartening, we look forward to seeing how God will use these events to strengthen His people and grow His church. Our prayer is that we will continue to abide in Him, and together pursue love for one another and those who don’t yet know Christ as Saviour, as we face the challenges ahead.

We would give one final encouragement: Christ has already laid our foundation - it is firm, it is sure, it cannot be removed. This is a momentary affliction, but it will not thwart the plans of God. Let us hold unswervingly to our hope, for He who promised is faithful.