Coronavirus/COVID-19 Resources for Congregations and Members

Congregational Vitality

Hosannas and honks

Where there’s a will, there’s a driveway. And although this year’s Palm Sunday festival procession into an “upper parking lot” more closely resembled a line at a carwash than a celebration of worship, exigent circumstances call for extreme creativity, imagination and grace. And honks over Hosannas.   

‘People delight in the feeling of making a difference’

Leaders of worshiping communities may be hesitant as they seek to bolster funding during a pandemic. But there are ways to do that by inviting people to do what they want to do anyway, the Revs. Jon Moore and Princeton Abaraoha told about 40 people participating in a Thursday webinar “Funding your Ministry in a Time of Crisis,” put on by 1001 New Worshiping Communities.

‘We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed’

For a Zoom gathering of about 65 people ready to hear Wednesday about doing intentional, authentic evangelism in the time of a pandemic, the director of Theology, Formation & Evangelism, the Rev. Dr. Ray Jones III, looked to one of his favorite biblical texts in Paul’s second letter to the church at Corinth: “We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair;  persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be made visible in our bodies.”

Online Easter celebration to be released April 9

Dressed in the white robes of Easter, the Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II and the Rev. Dr. Diane Moffett — together with remote appearances by the Rev. Cindy Kohlmann and Ruling Elder Vilmarie Cintrón-Olivieri, Co-Moderators of the 223rd General Assembly — leave little doubt in a worship video set for release April 9 that the good news of Christ’s resurrection transcends the despair, economic deprivation and isolation brought on by the coronavirus.

Churches can tap into their share of the $2.2 trillion CARES Act

Churches and other nonprofit organizations are eligible for their portion of the $350 billion in aid, the same as small businesses, as part of the $2.2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act passed by Congress last week and signed into law by President Donald Trump Friday.

Crowdsourcing kindness

The Rev. Morgan Schmidt serves First Presbyterian Church in Bend, Oregon, as the associate pastor of teens and 20-somethings. When she launched the Facebook site Pandemic Partners on March 12, little did she know the extraordinary impact that using crowdsourcing to help fill some of the needs brought on by the coronavirus would have on her Central Oregon community of about 98,000.

US Congregational Vitality Survey website launched

The ecumenical U.S. Congregational Vitality Survey (USCVS) is designed to help church leaders understand the attitudes, opinions and perceptions of worshipers and leaders in congregations. Created through a collaboration of sociologists, theologians and Christian educators in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), the survey has been helping congregations from many denominations measure their vitality since 2001.

Praying for the women of Hagar’s Community Church

Hagar’s Community Church, a 1001 New Worshiping Community in Olympia Presbytery located inside the Washington Corrections Center for Women (WCCW), is currently unable to meet for worship due to social distancing required inside the prison during the COVID-19 health crisis.