Updat July 16, 2020
Good Afternoon Porter First Family,

Below is a video message from our pastor.  It outlines what the next couple of weeks will look like for Porter First.  In summary, we will continue online for Sunday Worship and Life Groups through July 26 and Wednesday Worship thru July 29.  We plan to open our campus for all activities beginning Sunday, August 2. 


Blessings,
Damon Simpson
Updated July 3, 2020
Dear Porter First Family,

Due to the Governor’s mandatory mask order and strong encouragement that no groups of 10 or more meet together along with several people who have tested positive for Covid-19, we are moving all our services back online for the immediate future. That means our Life Groups, Sunday Morning Worship Service, and Wednesday Night Worship Service will all be online for at least the next two weeks. Please pass the word and plan on engaging in worship through our streaming page at www.fbcporter.com or our Facebook page.

Please be in prayer that this pandemic will taper off soon. Protect yourself by wearing a mask and practicing social distancing.

We will reevaluate if it is safe for us to resume meeting in person Friday, July 17th. Check the website for updated information or the First In Focus E-Newsletter.

Blessings!
Rob Ray
Updated June 4, 2020
 
Dear Porter First Family,
 
The last three months have been hard on all of us adjusting to the new reality of social distancing during the Covid-19 pandemic.  God created us to live in community, not in isolation.  I know I have struggled at times feeling isolated and helpless to lead this church.   I am grateful that we at least had technology to continue our ministry through live streaming of our Weekend Worship Services and Wednesday night worship.
 
The good news is for the last 4 weeks we have been meeting on campus both on Saturday night and Sunday morning for worship while continuing Life Groups via Zoom.  Thanks to Damon for the extra effort made to make this ministry available.  Beginning this Sunday, June 7th, we are combining the two weekend services into one service on Sunday morning at 10:30 a.m.  We are also having Life Groups on campus at 9:15 a.m. that will be pushed out via Zoom for those not able or ready to regather yet.  We understand that people have differences of opinion and preference regarding regathering. There are some that think we made a mistake by not meeting on campus for those weeks.  Others think we are opening up too soon now.  I have received probably no less than six or seven different opinions about what we should have done or should do that are backed by many others.  The reality is the staff has wrestled with this for many hours each week in reviewing recommendations by authorities, healthcare experts, what other churches are doing and in prayer.  We have sought to make the best decision possible to ensure the safety of our people, honor those in authority, and glorify our LORD.
 
Even though we did not meet on Campus for six or seven weeks, we never closed.  We had worship each week that was viewed by hundreds more than ever attend our church personally.  Covid-19 forced us to consider a streaming ministry we already had but did not put a lot of effort into.  We invested much money and time in equipment, training, and evaluation of the on-line services each week.  Many times, spending more than half a day working out bugs to record a 45 minute to hour service.  I am grateful to our staff for the adjustments they have made during these days, especially Troy.  He has had to take the lead on upgrading our technology and working out the bugs that seemed to appear each week about the time we were set to record the service.   Now that we are worshipping live again on campus, we are still very much aware of those who are viewing our services online via our Web Page or Facebook.  Just because we are back on campus, doesn’t mean we will shuttle that ministry.  It was there before Covid-19 and will be afterward.
 
I hope to see you Sunday.  Although we will be worshipping in the building, we will still be encouraging social distancing.  Not everything will be the same as before Covid-19.  Please follow the guidelines that will be on the signage throughout the building.  Masks are not mandatory, but you can certainly wear one if you want.  Our children’s and preschool workers will be wearing masks.
 
Please be in prayer for our people, our community, and our church as it seeks to carry out Christ’s mission.  Many of our people have lost their jobs, been furloughed, faced cut back of hours or salary, and still others are fearful that their jobs may play out soon.   As more and more things open back up it also puts a burden on parents who need childcare during the day.   Pray for the church to find ways to minister to our community and also build community with youth and children as we begin to regather in those ministries as well.  Zacheriah left about the time all this came upon us and with all the uncertainties of finances, when we could meet again, social distancing, etc. we had to put the search for a Youth Pastor on hold.  Please be in prayer that we will know the mind of Christ in this area.
 
Blessings!
Rob Ray
Updated May 28, 2020
 
Dear Porter First Family,
 
I want you to know that you are loved and being prayed for weekly.  I hope you and your family are well physically, emotionally, financially and spiritually.
 
These have been trying days in a lot of ways and more seems to be ahead of us.  Know that the staff is praying and planning, using the best information we can get and the leadership of the Holy Spirit.
 
We began having services without childcare the weekend of Mother’s Day.   We have had three weeks of meeting on Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday.  Saturday night services have been the highest attended services each week.  We will meet this Lord’s day, May 30th and 31st on the same schedule.
 
Beginning Sunday, June 7th, we are consolidating the services and returning to one Sunday Service at 10:30 a.m.  with childcare and Kid’s Jam Church.  We will still be practicing social distancing and enhanced sanitizing procedures.  We are also moving most of our Life Groups back on campus on that Sunday.  Plans are to stream the Life Groups via Zoom for those not yet ready to regather on campus.  Those Life Groups will meet at our traditional time of 9:15 a.m. rather than the time they have been meeting for the last two plus months.   Our preschool, children and youth Life Groups will be meeting with enhanced sanitizing protocol.  Bro. Maury has a detailed protocol for Preschool and Children.
 
Our Wednesday Service will continue to be a Family Worship Experience at 6:30 p.m. each week.  We are exploring what love is from 1 Corinthians 13.  Most of our other weekly ministries will not begin again until late Summer or early Fall.
 
The venues that were to host Youth Camp, Children’s Camp and Lead Camp have all chosen not to have camps this summer.  Maury is working on options for a late summer VBS/Day Camp or Fall Break VBS/Day Camp.
 
Whether you choose to gather on our campus or meet with us online, I pray that God will speak to you and use you as a conduit of His grace.  Every one of us needs to participate in a Life Group either on campus or via Zoom.  We need to pray for our country, her leaders, your staff and the impact of our church on this community.  We need you to find creative ways to minister to others.  We also need to be faithful and generous in our giving to carry out the mission of helping people Encounter God, Grow Up in Christ and To Go Serve Others.
 
I hope to see you soon.

Blessings!
Rob Ray


Phase 2– Begins Sunday, June 7
  • Social distancing will continue.
  • Life Groups for all ages will resume meeting on Sundays @ 9:15 a.m. on campus.  Each Adult Life Group will choose to have a Zoom link available for those who choose to continue to stay home and join remotely .
  • Sunday Services at 10:30 a.m. Kid' Jam & Kid's Jam Jr (Children's church) will resume for preschool through 5th grade.
  • Services will continue to be broadcast via our web page LIVE stream and Facebook LIVE at 10:30 a.m. on Sundays and 6:30 p.m. on Wednesdays.
  • Coffee service will resume in the second floor coffee lobby for adults only.  Coffee will be served by the volunteer staff. No self serve.
  • No self serve of any food or beverages for any function on the property.
  • Selected narrow hallways in the building will be marked one way to allow for social distancing

Social Distancing Guidelines beginning in Phase 2
  • There will be no meet and greet time in worship service.
  • The offering plates will not be passed.  Worshippers are encouraged to use the offering receptacles at the worship center entrances or give online.
  • Greeters will be at entrances to open doors for those entering the building.  They will speak but not shake hands.
  • Worshippers are encouraged to wear masks and are asked to wash their hands, and use the hand sanitizers at the entrances regularly.
  • Food or beverages will only be served by designated servers.  No self serve.
  • The third floor will be closed.
  • Every other pew will be closed.  Family units can sit together, but we ask non-family attendees to leave at least two seats between you and your closest neighbor.
  • The building will be cleaned and sanitized prior to each service by our cleaning service.
Updated May 1, 2020
Porter First Baptist Reopening Plan

Phase 1 – Begins Saturday, May 9
  • Saturday, May 9 Services at 6:30 p.m. (No Childcare, Social Distancing will be in place)
  • Sunday, May 10 Services at 10:30 a.m. (No Childcare, Social Distancing will be in place)
  • The Hispanic Service will be on Sundays at 10:30 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall. (No Childcare, Social Distancing will be in place.  They will enter and exit through the Fellowship Hall/Gym Entrance.)
  • Wednesday Services at 6:30 p.m. (No Childcare, children and youth will be involved in the service,  Social Distancing will be in place)
  • Life Groups will continue to meet online at least through the month of May.
  • The staff will work out of the offices beginning Monday, May 11, 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
  • Services will be broadcast weekly via our web page LIVE stream and Facebook LIVE at 10:30 a.m. on Sundays and 6:30 p.m. on Wednesdays.
  • This plan will be updated with Phase 2 on May 29.  The above will be in place from May 9-31.
 
Social Distancing Guidelines
  • There will be no meet and greet time in worship service.
  • The offering plates will not be passed.  Worshippers are encouraged to use the offering receptacles at the worship center entrances or give online.
  • Worshippers must use the south or north entrances.  The Fellowship Hall entrance will be designated for the Hispanic church only.
  • Volunteers will be screened prior to beginning their service.
  • Greeters will wear masks and open doors for those entering the building.  They will speak but not shake hands.
  • Worshippers are strongly encouraged to wear masks, wash their hands, and use the hand sanitizers at the entrances.
  • There will be no food or beverages served.
  • The second and third floors will be closed.
  • The doors to the hallway to the gym and Fellowship Hall will be locked.
  • Every other pew will be closed.  Family units can sit together, but non-family attendees need to leave at least two seats between you your closest neighbor.
  • The building will be cleaned and sanitized prior to our reopening and after each service by our cleaning service.

Updated April 24, 2020

Dear Porter First Family and Friends,

The Pastor and Staff of Porter First Baptist want you to know that we love you, are praying for you, and are here to serve you.  I cannot wait till we can meet face to face in the same room and have fellowship together.  The internet opportunities to worship are the best we can do right now, but they are no substitute for the physical community that  we experience when we  gather in person.   The good news is it looks like we are at least getting closer to that becoming a reality in some form soon.

The staff met for a half day this past Tuesday to walk through different attendance threshold scenarios.  We have some tentative plans for different size limits, but as we all know, things change daily with this virus and so our plans must be flexible.  Currently, we are not going to announce them, until Governor Abbot gives us the go ahead to start meeting  in large groups.

I do want you to realize that our schedule will look vastly different for the foreseeable future.  Even when we are given the go ahead, we will still have to practice social distancing.  Most likely that will mean Life Groups will have to continue to meet online do to the restricted space of the rooms.  Designating one person every 6 feet would reduce potential attendance of each class dramatically.   We are exploring other options, but just want you to know that everything will not be able to be started back immediately.

Please continue to pray that God will accelerate a conclusion to this pandemic.  Pray for God’s grace, mercy, and peace to be showered upon those who have the virus and those who are caring for those with the virus.  Pray for protection for those who are still working and have increased exposure.  Pray for those who are not working for God’s diving provision in some form.  Pray for people to be patient, express grace, and kindness, and have a servant’s heart.  Pray for the church to be bold and take opportunities to point people to Christ in these days of crisis.  Pray that God would be known and glorified in and through the people of Porter First.

I will be starting a new series on May 3rd for eight weeks entitled Intentional Parenting.  These days of quarantine have been great for some families and a challenge for others. God’s word offers a lot of hope and practical instruction of how to raise up godly children.  Join me in this series at 10:30 a.m. each Sunday in May and June.

Blessings!
Rob Ray, Pastor
Updated April 8, 2020

Dear Friends,

Greetings in the matchless name of our sovereign and saving Lord Jesus Christ.

I hope this communication piece finds you healthy.  If not, please contact our church office and let us know so that we can begin praying specifically for you.  I know that these days are filled with fear, anxiety, panic, wonder what the future beholds, financial stress, loneliness, and isolation.  Yet during the chaos, we are told to “Be anxious about nothing, but to pray about everything with thanksgiving, letting our request be known to God.”  When we do, He responds by granting us grace and peace that guards our hearts and minds and keeps us centered on Christ Jesus.  That is my prayer for you.

Even though we can’t go to church, we can be the church.  The church is not confined to a physical address, but is made up of people who have been born again by the work of Christ on the cross and His resurrection three days later.  Our church is gathering weekly virtually online via our live stream on the webpage or Facebook Live.  Easter Sunday  you will have a chance to worship at either 9:00 a.m. or 10:30 a.m. via those mediums.   Invite someone to engage in worship with you.  There are worship invitations posted on Facebook that you can share with your friends.   We also are streaming a mid-week service with music and a study in the Song of Solomon at 6:30 p.m. on both the webpage LIVE Stream and Facebook LIVE.

Our Life Groups are meeting online each week via ZOOM.  If you are not in a Life Group, I want to encourage you to try one.  Just call the office and you will be given an invitation to join a group where you can hear and see the teacher teach, participate verbally and visually in discussion and prayer, and just enjoy connecting with other believers.  Some groups are meeting on Saturdays, some on Sunday morning and some Sunday Night.  I am sure there is a group that fits your schedule.

We will be observing the Lord’s Supper LIVE online Thursday, April 9, 6:30 p.m.   Join us on LIVE Stream or Facebook LIVE.  We will have a short devotional thought, prayer and partake of the Lord’s Supper together commemorating the Lord’s Last Supper on Thursday night with His disciples.  Grab a piece of bread or cracker and some juice and join us.

Giving has been somewhat erratic the last four weeks.  This past Sunday was more like normal, and we are grateful.  You have several ways that you can give your tithes and offerings.   You can give online by clicking the Give Now button on the front page.  Just follow the instructions to set up your account if you don’t have one or proceed immediately to the giving option.  Once set up, it only takes a minute at most.  You can also set up reoccurring giving that automatically withdraws it from your bank account or charges to your card when you want it to.  You can also give by texting FBCPORTER to 73256 and following the instructions.  You will receive a reply text asking you to click on a secure link to finish the process.   You can also mail your offering to FBC Porter, PO Box 650, Porter, TX 77365.

One of the downfalls of being held up in the house is even TV programming is on hold.  It is hard to find something to occupy all the time you have available.  The church is enrolled in a program with Right Now Media where church members can get a free subscription to thousands of children’s, youth and adult programming.    There are children’s movies, teaching videos, and parenting helps for families.  You will find Bible Studies and series based on Christian best seller books by you favorite authors.   You can stream this free into your home.  All you need to do to get your unique login is text RIGHTNOW FBCPORTER to 41411 or contact Bro Damon at [email protected].   Take advantage of this great discipleship training platform.

People often ask, when are we going to do another church pictorial directory.  For the most part, they are like the dinosaurs, extinct.   These traditional directories took hundreds of hours to produce and were somewhat dated by the time they were printed and delivered.  Nowadays, just about everyone is connected online.   You now can have access to our online church directory with a Realm account.  Visit our Realm webpage for all the information about Realm.  Realm is our online membership data base, but in order for you to have access, you must register for a Realm account.  There you can see your profile, update your personal information, upload a current picture, and search for other members plus a whole lot more, all with your smart phone, tablet or computer. You can also download the mobile app for Realm called Realm Connect downloadable on IOS or Android.

This is Easter week.  We are reminded Jesus is alive.  His resurrection power overcame sin, self, Satan, and the grave.  His resurrection power can help you live victoriously even amid a pandemic.  See the empty tomb and run tell your friends, HE IS ALIVE!

Engage with us in worship online this Sunday and invite someone to join you.

God loves you and so do I.

Blessings!
Rob Ray
Updated April 3, 2020

Dear Porter First Family and Friends,

I want you to know that we are praying for your health, protection, God’s provision, and for opportunities for you to minister to others in Jesus name and share the good news that His life, death, and resurrection brings to those who receive and follow Him.

Although we cannot meet at the building right now, you do have multiple opportunities to worship with us online.  Our Sunday Worship Service streams on our LIVE webpage at 10:30 a.m. as well as on Facebook LIVE.  If you happen to miss the worship, you can also get it on demand at either one of those places following the LIVE stream.  The notes are also available on both.  We would encourage you and your family to take pictures of your watch party and post them on social media.  It is always good to see faces you haven’t seen in a while.

Eric Geiger, former VP of LifeWay Christian Resources, shared a blog post listing “7 Ways to Make the Most of Your Online Church Experience.”   I have included a link to the post, but will list the 7 Ways here:
  • Be Ready, where you watch, before the service begins.
  • Put away other electronic devises and engage in the service.
  • Pray that the Lord will teach you and encourage you.
  • Sing aloud.  Yes, it feels awkward at first.  But go for it.
  • Follow along in your Bible. Take notes.  The outlines are on our Web page.
  • If you normally give in offering plate or giving receptacles, give online.
  • Reflect on the message or discuss the message with others.

The staff is working from home and is at the office from time to time during the week.  You can call the church office number during office hours and it will be answered by Carla.  You can also call any of us on our cell phone or email us when you need us.

This past week our Life Group Teachers have attempted to call all their LG members to check on them.  We have also had our staff and some volunteers to begin calling our whole roll this week to check on them and see if there is anything we could do for them and how we may pray for them.   We are still in need of more volunteers to make calls.  After we have called our members, I want to call all of those who have visited the last few months.   We will provide you with a list of names and phone numbers as well as talking points to help guide your conversation.  We do want you to make notes and report back to the office once you have completed your assignment.

Let’s pray that this will pass quickly, and that people will begin to seek God in the midst of this crisis.  Be strong and courageous and point them to the cross and the empty tomb.  Jesus, He is our only hope.

Blessings!
Rob Ray, Pastor
Updated March 27, 2020

Dear Porter First Family and Friends,

In these unprecedented days I want to encourage you to keep the faith, strengthen yourself in the Lord through fervent prayer and Bible Study, and look for ways to show the compassion of Christ and share the gospel with the hurting and hopeless.  The church is not a building, but the people of God.  We gather on Sundays only to scatter and be the church to the world the rest of the week.  Our gathering looks different these days, but that doesn’t change our mission.  You are gifted, called, and equipped to help people find God.  Claim God’s presence and boldness and look for opportunities to make His name and fame known to our community.

At the top of this page is a "Watch Live" button for you to worship with us LIVE as well as on Facebook LIVE.  Our Life Groups are also meeting  by video each weekly via Zoom and taught by your Life Group teacher.  I want to ask you to help me and the staff check on our Porter First Family.  This next week I need 18 people who would be willing to take a page of our church roll and call those listed on the page.  You will be given a script to help guide the conversation.  Basically, we want to know how they are doing, do they need anything, how we can pray for them, and confirm the contact information on the page, and make sure they know how to access our services and Life Groups.

If you would be willing to make around 20 calls next week please email Carla Stephens at [email protected] and she will email you a page of the directory and a copy of the script to guide you.  I would ask that you try to make those calls before Sunday, April 5th.  Our Life Groups classes are seeking to stay in contact with their class members, but many are not a part of a Life Group.  You would be helping care for our church during this crisis.

Let me also remind you that we still need people to remain faithful in their giving.  We are in the process of reducing our expenses, but there are many fixed costs that we cannot do anything about.  You can give via…
  1. Web Page---click on the giving tab and it will guide you through the process.   You can set up reoccurring giving so that you never have to visit the page again unless you want to change something.
  2. Text Giving---You can text FBCPORTER to 73256.  It takes a few minutes to set up the first time, but after that you can give in just seconds.
  3. Mail---The offices are open as of the sending of this email, but you can mail them to FBC Porter, PO Box 650, Porter, TX 77365.

***UPDATE*** Due to the Montgomery County Shelter In Place order, our staff will be working from home until the order is lifted.  You can still reach us by phone at 281-354-3339, by church email at [email protected], or by a staff member individual email.

 Please let us know if you need anything.  The staff has worked hard to shift our content to online.  It has been a learning process for us all.  We are beginning to plan and contemplate how we can minister to our community during this quarantine and when it is lifted.  If you have a thought or idea, I would welcome any suggestions.

I love you and count it a privilege to be your pastor.  Please know that Ann and I are praying for you.  Let us know if there is something we can do for you during these days.  Remember, God loves you, is with you, and fights for you.  Keep the faith and we will pass through these days purified and stronger than we were before.

Blessings!

Rob Ray
Pastor
Updated March 18, 2020

Dear Follower of Jesus,

Sunday, we announced that our Sunday evening and Wednesday evening activities would be canceled until further notice due to the efforts to slow down the exposure of the Covid-19 virus.  Our intention was to meet next Sunday, March 22nd, as we did this past Sunday.  However, after the new decrees to limit crowds to ten people or less, we are moving our 10:30 a.m. Sunday Morning worship service and 9:15 a.m. Life Group sessions online until it is deemed appropriate to meet again.  It pains me to make this decision, but it would bring greater pain knowing that we facilitated someone contracting the virus because of our negligence.

You will be able to access the service live via our web page fbcporter.com/Live or through Facebook Live.  You can also access it at any time you wish during the week via these two channels.  Bro. Troy is working on music for Sunday and I will bring a message of hope from God’s Word.  I will suspend my Enemies of Marriage Series and come back to that later.

We are working on a plan to enable each class to meet sometime during the week on the ZOOM Meeting/Webinar platform.  It is free and can handle the whole class viewing the teacher and each other.  It will allow the class to respond to the teacher or to each other.  The biggest challenge is that you are limited to 40 minutes per session.   Bro. Damon will be contacting and training the teachers on how to use this technology.  By no later than March 29th, your class can meet for inspiration, instruction, ministry, and community.   Your teacher will contact you soon to share with you how you can be ready for this process.

Bro. Maury is working on a plan for children to have access to their Life Kids Lessons and Kid’s Jam Children’s Church.  These will hopefully be available on the web page soon for parents to use with their children during these trying times.

We have some other ideas that will likely become reality in the next week or so to help fill the gaps created by not being able to meet in our buildings.

Let me remind you that Porter First Baptist Church is not the building located at 24570 FM 1314.  Porter First is a group of people who have been gloriously redeemed from their grievous sin and been birthed anew as Children of the living God.  We are a specific group of people who have experienced that new birth and called by God to be a part of a local body in Porter called Porter First Baptist.  The building should not be our identity, Christ is the one in whom we live, move and have our being.  On Sundays traditionally the church gathers, but later that day it scatters to be the church to a lost and hopeless world.  Now, the reality is that we must gather using technology and still find ways to minister to people in this moment of social distancing.

If you become sick or know of someone who has become sick, please let us know so we can pray for you.

God is in control, and eventually this will pass.  In the meantime, be strong and courageous.   Pray more fervently than you ever have.   Follow health advisories and practice good hygiene.  Share the good news of hope, peace, and salvation in Christ Jesus.

Blessings!
Rob Ray
Pastor
Updated March 15, 2020

Dear Church Family & Friends,

Based upon the current situation with COVID-19, we have decided to suspend all Sunday evening activities and weekday activities, including Wednesday evening activities, until March 29. At that point we will reassess this situation and plan accordingly.

At this point, we do plan to continue meeting for Life Groups and Worship on Sunday mornings as scheduled.

We will keep you updated with any additional  information or changes as they come available.

We want to remind you to continue to be diligent in putting into practice some practical things to keep safe:
  1. Use and keep hand sanitizer with you.
  2. Throw away your tissue after use.
  3. Wash your hands often with soap & water for at least 20 seconds.
  4. Stay at home if you are sick.
  5. Avoid close contact with infected people.
  6. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  7. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue (then throw it away) or use the inside of your elbow.
  8. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces in your home.
  9. Use a face mask only if you have symptoms to avoid contaminating others who aren’t sick.
 Should you want to be better informed about the COVID-19 Virus, I would recommend you go to the Centers for Disease Control website.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us via email or phone.

Blessings,
Damon Simpson
Updated March 12, 2020

Dear Porter First Family and Friends,

Jesus tells us in Luke 12 that we in the Church are not to be slaves to fear, that the hairs on our head are numbered, and that we individually hold infinitely more value to God than even the sparrows whom he provides for daily. At the same time, we’re also instructed to behave wisely in the navigation of our daily lives. Striking the correct balance between the two can be tricky.

As the COVID-19 virus continues to spread globally, it is increasingly easy to get caught up in the cacophony of fear, panic, and despair on display throughout the world and being stoked by media. The unknown impact of this virus’ reach could be the beginning of a pandemic; it could also resemble previous false apocalyptic viruses such as H1N1, SARS, and others like them. Our response as Christians is to 1) pray, 2) trust God and not panic, 3) stay informed, and 4) be ready to give the reason for the hope and resolute calmness within us.

 We want the Porter First Baptist congregation to be informed and equipped with the right plan. As the bigger picture emerges, there are some practical things that you can do:
  1. Use and keep hand sanitizer with you.
  2. Throw away your tissue after use.
  3. Wash your hands often with soap & water for at least 20 seconds.
  4. Stay at home if you are sick.
  5. Avoid close contact with infected people.
  6. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  7. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw it away.
  8.  Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces in your home.
  9. Use a face mask only if you have symptoms to avoid contaminating others who aren’t sick.

In addition to our standard protocol of cleaning and sanitizing, here are some additional precautions that the church is taking:
  1. Clean and wipe down all frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs, pews, the back of pews, etc.
  2. Additional sanitizing processes for all toys, games, and playground equipment in the preschool and children’s area.
  3. Discontinue the shaking of hands during the welcome in the worship service.
  4. Providing hand sanitizer at all entrances and around the church along with tissue.
 
If you are uncomfortable being in a public place and decide to stay home, remember that you can watch the live stream via our web page or on FACEBOOK Live each Sunday morning and evening. You can also give via our web page or by texting “FBCPORTER” to 73256. If you have never given online or by text, it will take just a few minutes to set up your encrypted profile. Thereafter, it just takes mere seconds to give.

Most of all, I want you to “be strong and courageous and don’t be dismayed or fear” (Joshua 1:1-9). “For God hasn’t given us the spirit of fear, but of power and love and self-control” (2 Timothy 1:7). The frenzy around this virus positions you uniquely to speak words of hope, peace, and life. “But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15, ESV).

 Should you want to be better informed about the COVID-19 Virus, I would recommend you go to the Centers for Disease Control website.

 Blessings!
 Rob Ray

 P.S. I hope to see you Sunday with Bible in hand.