Hi Integrity Family!
Let me apologize in advance for the length of this post. We are in unprecedented times in our lifetimes, and I want to make sure that we communicate as clearly as we possibly can. The purpose of this letter is to inform you of changes to the schedule and rhythms of our church, due to the COVID19 outbreak. I’m going to refer in this letter and forward, to this time of change for us as a time of ‘Revised Rhythm’. Integrity Church will still be moving full steam ahead, as, for the most part, we are moving the preponderance of our on-campus events to virtual formats. So we won’t be physically together on Sunday mornings and even Wednesday nights for a while. This is obviously a less than ideal scenario, but I’m pleased that in the plan you will read about below, we have taken into account ALL of our age group ministries, ensuring that our children and teens, as well as our adults, have quality virtual church experiences. I also want to put everything about our current plans for these different age groups in ONE communication. That is another reason for the length of this message. Thanks in advance for understanding.
The Why? and the How?
First, let me review a bit. In this past weekend’s services, I made the points that
a) the Church is the HOPE of the world,
b) people look for an anchor in difficult and tumultuous times, and
c) there are Christians all over the world under persecution, who risk death just by meeting.
I explained on Sunday that these three points drove much of our decision to keep our doors open this past weekend. Our decision to change this strategy does nothing to minimize our commitment to these points, but is in response to the reality that we need to comply with guidance from our president and health-related organizations that are focusing on curbing the impact of the virus.
In planning for a ‘virtual’ church experience, we have incorporated these primary goals….
1) Create as close to an authentic experience for you as possible.
2) Encourage you to maintain the ‘structure’ of Sunday and Wednesday worship for your family. In other words, we want to maintain our scheduling habits as they relate to church activity and experience.
3) Utilize our high-quality volunteer teachers and workers in the virtual programming that we will be providing for you, and….
4) Encourage all Integrity folks to participate fully with their families in the experiences that we design for them.
In the rest of this message we will discuss the impact for our different key ministries related to our primary gathering times. Please note that additional and ministry-specific instructions will be provided within individual ministries, to supplement that provided in this message. If you serve in a ministry area, please be on the lookout for those pieces of communication.
So, what are the specific changes? Here we go….
Many of you will see an increased level of pastoral care ‘touches’, as we strive to stay connected with you during this time of Revised Rhythm. Pastor Ray, our shepherding pastor, is working with elders, small group leaders and pastoral care team members to step up our connection efforts. We will be also doubling and tripling up our efforts to stay connected with folks in the more mature age groups, as well as folks who may be more ‘at risk’ in the current environment.
Weekend Adult Worship Services
For this Sunday, March 22nd, the Integrity Adult worship service will be prerecorded and be made available for viewing at 10:00am on our YouTube Channel and Website. In order to easily find the Sunday morning service please SUBSCRIBE TO OUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL HERE –https://www.youtube.com/user/integritychurch/playlists
All you need to subscribe is to sign up for a free YouTube account, OR if you already have a Google account or Gmail email address you can log in to YouTube with either of those logins.
We will be making some equipment upgrades after this coming Sunday. With that, on Sunday, March 29, we will provide a Livestream Service to view and share. We encourage you to interact with us as much as you can on Sundays (and during the entire week). This interaction includes filling out your online connect card, completing the outline with the message, and financial giving (more on this at the end of this letter). All of these things can be done through our Integrity App, as well as our website. You can find and download our App through your app store by searching Integrity – Burlington NC. Our website is www.integritync.org.
To have access to our Facebook page, search @integritync on Facebook and click on the “LIKE” button on our page. Our social media pages will play a big role during this time. If you do not have access to online resources, please contact Chris Newsom at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our church office at 336.227.0121 and we will provide you with the appropriate resource materials.
Our Doors WILL be Open on Sunday’s
As a supplement, the Worship Center will be open from 11:30AM – 1:00PM if you would like to come and pray, we encourage this as prayer must be a priority in our lives. We trust that we will be able to manage the size of prayer groups that choose to take this opportunity. We ask that you arrive no earlier than 11:30because the Livestream Service will be taking place up until that time.
Life Development Age-Graded Groups:
During this time of Revised Rhythm, we want to provide your preschoolers, elementary age and middle and high school age children with as real a Sunday morning experience as possible. Here below, by age group, are our plans for this time, beginning this coming weekend.
God’s Little House (preschool)
We will be creating a link on our website (www.integritync.org) for you to access our Bible Adventure video. This has become one of the favorite parts of Sundays for many of our preschoolers! On top of this, we are creating teaching content that you can show your preschooler – each week, one of our preschool teachers will film a video of a fun and interactive lesson. We encourage you to participate with your preschooler.
We also encourage each of you to download the YouVersion Bible App for Kids. On this app, you can read the Bible story that goes along with the video of the week. Your child will then complete a lesson-based activity. We will also be providing an activity book that can be downloaded each week to go with the story.
Please reach out to us and let us know how we can help you during this time. We want to continue to connect with you and your kids, so please engage with us!
iKidz (Elementary school age)
For their learning curriculum, our iKidz have been going through a RightNow Media video series entitled Friends & Heroes. This series can be accessed through your RightNow Media account. If you do not have a RightNow Media account, click this link https://www.rightnowmedia.org/account/invite/INTEGRITY to sign up. We will also have our teachers filming interactive lessons for your kids to view. These will be available on our website. We will also have activity pages for your kids to engage with and a link to the Friends & Heroes website for them to access several different activities. Again, our goal is to engage with each person in your home in the same fashion we would in a weekly meeting, so please connect with us! If there is anything we can do to help, let us know!!
Integrity Students (Middle and High School)
Starting Sunday, we will be using an Instagram platform called IGTV, through our handle @integritystudents, to host weekly messages! This is something we are very excited about! Each week we will post a 15-20-minute message for our students. These messages will be accessible at any time through our Instagram and through IGTV. Also, as you know, small groups play a vital role in the life of our students. While our small groups will not be able to meet in person, it is the desire of our small group leaders to meet virtually. There are several different options to make this happen.
In the coming days, you will be hearing from small group leaders about how they would like to meet together. If your student has the technology available, please encourage them to engage! This will give students an opportunity to talk through what is going on in their lives (particularly important now during this time of COVID19 impact), discuss what the message was about, and how it applies to their lives, and then to pray for each other. Parents, if you are not sure how to get in touch with their small group leader, please reach out to Christi Johnson at email@example.com and she will help make the contact. Again, our goal will be to engage with the students as much as possible. Please pay attention to the Integrity Student Ministry FaceBook and Instagram pages as we will be a constant presence on it and will want to engage with you.
Midweek Service with Pastor Ray
Unfortunately, the midweek service for this week, March 18, will not be held. Beginning next Wednesday, March 25, the Midweek service will move to a live streaming platform through our Integrity Church Facebook page. As Pastor Ray’s teaching style is interactive, the Facebook Live platform will allow for questions to be submitted during the broadcast of the lesson.
Again, to have access to our Facebook page, search @integritync on Facebook and click the like button on our page. Facebook and our social media pages will play a big role during this time.
Adult Life (Small) Groups
Our adult life groups will be making decisions individually as to how they will proceed during this revised rhythm time. For groups that meet on campus, please be assured that we will be disinfecting in real time any and all rooms used for childcare. This includes disinfection of all surfaces and all toys.
In Malachi 3:10, God says through His prophet, ‘Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test!
In His Word, God makes clear time and again the call to us for Biblical Stewardship. We are to manage the assets He has ‘loaned’ to us for our time on earth, AND we must be supremely generous – Just as Jesus is generous to us through His death and resurrection, and through the blessings He gives us on a daily basis.
As we always encourage online giving in our stewardship practice in Integrity Church, we are obviously going to emphasize online giving even more during this time of Revised Rhythm.
We ask that if you can do this, that you begin doing so this week. Click here https://pushpay.com/g/integritync to give. You can also access this link from our website (www.integritync.org ) or from the Integrity Church App. However, we do recognize that some may not have access to the technology to practice online giving. If that is the case with you, please call our church office and speak with Debbie Summers, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org . We will be happy to provide you with stamped, self-addressed envelopes for you to use during this time.
Just because Integrity will not be meeting, per se, in a physical sense on Sundays and Wednesdays, keep in mind that the church will still be running ‘wide open’. During this time of challenge, we will be working to accomplish the goals of the church in different ways. We will also be working on plans for specific events and activities that will have been postponed and that need to be moved into the post-Revised Rhythm time frame. When we sense the ‘all clear’ signal to move back to full operations, Integrity Church will be back in full swing, perhaps at a busier level than before. Our desire is that events scheduled and postponed during the time of crisis will be re-scheduled. We truly don’t want the Integrity family to miss anything. In addition, we are continuing the work on our renovation, ConVerge on Integrity Café and Coffee Shop, and the Playschool at Integrity, still slated to open with next school year. So – there will be much to do during this Revised Rhythm, and the church will be VERY operational during these next few weeks.
I want to thank you in advance for your continued generosity during this time of Revised Rhythm. I believe that our generosity is even more generous when it is practiced in times of stress, and unsettledness. It’s also important that we understand that our generosity is in response to the unfathomable generosity that God has shown us through His Son Jesus’ substitutionary death on the cross. It is true that ‘God loves a cheerful giver…’ because He has proven Himself to be a Cheerful Giver TO US!
Thanks for reading this lengthy message. I hope you have found it to be informative, and I hope it helps you to move forward in your walk with Christ.