Next Steps Class

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Interested in learning more about RVC? Our church history? Our beliefs? Our goals? How to get more involved? What it means to be a member? If so, join us at our “Next Steps Class” where we will answer all of those questions and more! Our next class is scheduled for January 12th right after the church service. Lunch will be provided.

If you are also in need of childcare please email Aaron@RedVillageChurch.com.

(The class typically last around 2 hours)

How to be a good small group attender in light of COVID-19

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As followers of Jesus Christ we are called to love one another as Christ has loved us.  In light of all that is taking place around us because of the coronavirus there will be plenty of important opportunities for us to show love.  Below are some things to consider as we consider how we can continue to live in community with one another in our small groups.

1st.  If you, a family member, a roommate, or some one you recently interacted with are sick please refrain from attending a small group.  Out of love for others please consider others more highly than yourself and stay home.  Thankfully we live in an age of technology where you can participate in the meeting either through a speaker phone or video call.

2nd.  Please take time to thoroughly wash your hands throughout the day and be cautious of others if you feel a sneeze coming on.  Even though these might seem like small things to do they both are always at or near the top of the list that medical professionals recommend doing to help others healthy.

3rd.   Be cautious with things like hand shakes and hugs.  At times the right thing to do is to offer a hug when someone is in need of one but please be sensitive to offer a hug only during those times.

4th.  Take time to pray for whoever is hosting your group.  Pray that God would keep their home healthy, that He would help them to trust in Him, and that He would fill them with His joy.  

5th.   Seek as many opportunities as you can to show practical love to others in your group.  Could you write letters of encouragement?  Could you help your host do a deep clean before and after others arrive?  Could you help care for the children?  Could you help make a meal for others who were not able to make it?  

6th.   Work hard to see and to convey to your group the evidence of God’s grace whether it be in His promises to us in His Word or in providential blessings that are around us.  Let us not waste this time by being crippled by fear, worry, and anxiety, but may we use this time to ever more boldly declare the glory of God!  

Sunday Service (3/15) Cancelled

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Over the course of the last 24-48 hours as more information has come out we have decided that it would be best to cancel our services for this coming Sunday (and most likely more Sundays to come) as well as our Habits of Grace Seminar.   We hope and desire that this decision is not motivated by fear but by wisdom and love for neighbor.  Below is a letter written by one of our members (who is a lung doctor) that I thought was incredibly helpful and insightful.  Please take time to read through it.  

We are working through a plan for this Sunday in that we still believe that it is the Lord’s Day and still a day to set aside for worship.  The hope is by Saturday night to send you a guide to have a time of worship at your home which will include a recorded message, a prayer guide, and songs.  We also are asking the church to take Sunday to fast and pray.  I attached HERE a blog by David Mathis that gives information on fasting, if that is a spiritual discipline that you are not familiar with.    I also attached HERE a little blog that I wrote on family worship that will give you an idea on what we are aiming for on Sunday. 

 If you are willing to host people this Sunday or are desiring to find others to worship with please let me know.   We also are looking for some help organizing how we might be able to meet through video conference calls for those who might be sick and will have to take more extreme measures of quarantine.

 Please let me know what questions or concerns you have.  Please also take time to pray for our church, for decisions we might be making as a church, and for decisions our government leaders might be making for our country.  

May God use this time to cause us to trust in him more and to use his people (including us) to passionately and boldly share his gospel of peace to all of those around us!  

With Love, 

Pastor Aaron


From Dr Jay Tuck:

Greetings in the Name of our Sovereign Lord – 


Pandemics are not new for mankind. But for most of us they’re things that happen in other places and in other times that haven’t affected us personally. The current COVID-19 virus pandemic is different. It appears to be a worldwide phenomenon that is directly threatening the health and sometimes the lives of many. And it’s indirectly affecting the normal patterns of life of most. Our congregation is no different. The pastors and deacons of Red Village church have been working with medical professionals in our congregation on some practical advice and policies to share with our people.


General
Use common sense preventative measures. Vigorous, frequent handwashing is an effective measure to prevent the spread of viruses. 
Coughing and sneezing is often unavoidable. Make sure you’re doing it in a way that minimizes the spread of your respiratory secretions.
Minimize attendance and group events (more on this below). It’s possible to be infected with COVID-19 without ever getting sick. And, like most viral illnesses, COVID-19 spreads from infected people before they get sick. 
“Flatten the curve.” It’s probable that a lot of people are going to get sick from this virus. One of the most important things we can do collectively is to keep that rate of infection low, so our healthcare systems don’t become overwhelmed. We have the capability of taking care of a lot of critically ill patients, but there’s a limit to that number. This article explains this principle in detail (warning: there’s math).
Do not expose your neighbors to your illness. If you are showing signs of infection (including fevers, chills, sweats, runny nose, etc.) you should avoid unnecessary gatherings of people. 


Gathering Together
Christians should treasure gathering as a body. “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:23–25). There are, and have been, Christians who risk their lives to meet together under threat of persecution. On the other hand, few would advocate that we should meet during a natural disaster (like an earthquake or a tornado). A pandemic, if severe enough, is more like a natural disaster. One of our challenges is that we don’t know how severe it’s going to be. Because we don’t know, and because meetings of large groups of people may be making this pandemic worse.


For now, we aren’t discouraging our small group Villages from meeting together. Gatherings of small groups aren’t as much of a threat as large groups for spreading infections. But we’re also not requiring our Village leaders to keep their meetings going. If you do meet, make sure to show courtesy to one another using the general principles outlined above.


Other Things to Keep in Mind
Not everyone can afford to self-quarantine or practice “social distancing.” Economic pressure often makes this impractical. Please keep your eye out for people who may need help with practical matters (like money, help running errands, childcare, etc.).
If you need help or you know someone who does, your pastors and deacons are a resource for you.
God saved us “to love kindness” (Micah 6:8) and to be “zealous for good works” (Titus 2:14).
God works all things for our good, so we shouldn’t fear trials (Romans 8:28).
To die is gain, so we shouldn’t fear death (Philipians 1:21-23).
God takes care of birds and lilies, he’ll take care of us (Matthew 6:25-31).


Links:
The CDC
UWHealth Covid-19 Info
Madison and Dane County Public Health
How DC Churches Responded When the Government Banned Public Gatherings During the Spanish Flu 1918

In Light of COVID-19

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In light of everything taking place around us right now in response to the Coronavirus I thought it would be good for me to give you some updates and some decisions we are working through.  Today I have spent time talking with the medical people at RVC as well as other churches to start putting a wise plan in place for us.  Below are some changes we will be making and potentially making:

Sunday Morning Worship Service:  We are still planning to continue to meet on Sunday mornings for our church service but we will have a few changes including, for the time being, not participating in the Lord’s Supper or serving food.  We will have hand sanitizer located throughout the sanctuary for you to use, and we ask you to avoid things like hand shaking or hugs.

Village Kids:  At this point we still plan to offer our Village Kids classrooms but are planning to follow any policies put forth by the Madison School District. If schools are cancelled we will also be cancelling our Village Kids programs.  Your kids are still welcome to join us in the sanctuary.

Cleaning:  It seems like the most effective time to clean the building will be on Sunday mornings before the service.  We are going to need about 5-10 people to come to the church building on Sundays by 8:00 to ensure we give a deep clean before people start arriving.  If you would like to help let me know!  Please don’t just assume others will sign up.   It would be a much better problem to have more than enough people sign up than not enough!  As we get people to sign up I will work on creating a volunteer schedule. 

Villages/small groups:  We are going to leave it up to each Village on whether or not they plan on meeting and what that might look like.  However, that being said, our Villages might become even more important in the weeks ahead because it is beginning to look like it is possible that tight restrictions could be coming for large group gatherings which could affect our Sunday morning services. Small group gatherings could be a great way to stay in community and be in the Word.

Habits of Grace Seminar:  The seminar is still scheduled to take place March 20-21, but I have been in contact with our speaker, David Mathis, and it seems increasingly likely that we will end up rescheduling until a later date.  I will keep you posted as soon as decisions are made.

Sickness:  If you or even if someone in your family/roommate is sick we ask that you would stay home until the sickness has passed.  From what we are learning the virus can start out with the same symptoms as the common cold.  If you end up staying home from church please note that you can find all of our sermons on our website as well as on iTunes.  

Opportunities:  Even though this seems to be a very serious issue that is before us this also seems to be a great opportunity for us to live out our faith with our words and with our deeds not just towards each other but to all of those around us.  

As you talk with your neighbors and co-workers about everything that is taking place, can I encourage you to speak to them about the peace of Jesus Christ and find practical ways by which you can serve them?  

Prayer:  There obviously are a good number of things that we can be praying over.  If it helps you organize your prayer life here is a little list:  wisdom as decisions need to be made, unity for our church family, our seizing of opportunties to show love,  healing for the sick, and that the gospel light would shine.   Let’s also be praying for those serving in the medical field and their families.   Between doctors, med students, nurses, health care providers and Epic we have a sizable portion of our church who are involved in the medical field.  

Trust:  As a church we are seeking to be as wise as we can be as decisions are made, but the wisest decision we can make is to fully trust in our God who is Sovereign over all things, including this.  May God give us the grace to trust in his goodness, his power, and his plan as we long for all sickness and death to be forever removed from us when our Lord returns.   May God also help us to remember because of the resurrection of Jesus we are ALWAYS people of hope.

As more decisons are being made I will keep you posted.  Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions!  

Grace,

Aaron

p.s. Here also is an article that I found to be helpful on the Gospel Coalition.

Here also is more information from the Center of Disease Control and Prevention

Philippians 4

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness[d] be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned[e] and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

Staff Meet and Greet

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New to RVC? If so, we invite you to our Staff Meet and Greet on Sunday March 15th right after our Sunday morning service! At the meet and greet you will learn a little more about RVC, our history, how you can plug in and get a tour of our facility. The meet and greet will take between 20-25 minutes. If you would like to join us please meet at our welcome center in the back of our sanctuary after our worship service!