UPDATE: PCF-LA RESPONSE TO CORONAVIRUS

LATEST UPDATE AS OF MAY 23, 2020 FOR PCF-LA:

Dear PCF-LA Family,

I'm sharing these articles from May 15 and May 22 written by our International Church of the Foursquare Gospel President-Elect Randy Remington on decisions about re-opening of church facilities for public gatherings in light of the pandemic-related distancing measures we've been observing. These articles are primarily intended for pastors and church leaders but I find they thoughtfully, prayerfully, & wisely give useful guidance & perspective for all of us in approaching these decisions together. I'm also sharing it so you'll all have a window into the formative denominational direction I'm receiving as Lead Pastor of Praise Christian Fellowship Los Angeles. Our Foursquare President's guidance as described here will be pivotal in terms of how we'll be moving forward in the immediate future in prayerfully & carefully making our local decisions on when & how we'll approach reopening our church property for public gatherings again. That time hasn't arrived yet for us as PCF-LA, but we're praying, preparing, & believing for it by faith; the guidelines in these articles will help articulate for us all our steps along the way. Most of all, we trust & rejoice in knowing that Jesus is leading us through all of this.

Grace & Peace, Pastor Court

ICFG Recommendations for Considering When & How to Resume In-Person Church Gatherings: https://resources.foursquare.org/recommendations-for-determining-when-to-reopen-local-churches/

https://resources.foursquare.org/should-foursquare-churches-reopen-immediately/

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UPDATE AS OF MAY 4, 2020 FOR PCF-LA ON PANDEMIC DISTANCING GUIDELINES:

CA Gov. Gavin Newsom announced today (May 4, 2020) that elements of the Stage 2 reopening outlined in state guidelines on pandemic resilience could begin as early as this Friday May 8, 2020. Resumption of in-person worship services (including modifications for physical distancing & limited number of attendees) are part of Stage 3, which is likely still a matter of weeks away, though a specific timeline for Stage 3 has not yet been identified & will depend on data observed during the initiation & progression of Stage 2.

Pastor Courtney & the PCF-LA leadership are committed to resuming in-person gatherings in a wise manner as soon as is safely possible, in accordance with applicable law, available data, the best practice recommendations of medical professionals & agencies, and above all the Divine wisdom of the Lord available through the Holy Spirit. We are also committed to limiting any unnecessary risk of infection or exposure to our members, neighbors, & communities. We will continue to keep you informed and updated as we prayerfully progress in evaluating next steps in this unprecedented season. The Lord knows our hearts, our hopes, and best of all His plans (Jeremiah 29:11), and we will follow God's guidance every step of the way.

For More on the 05/04/2020 Announcement by Gov. Newsom:

https://abc7.com/reopening-california-governor-gavin-newsom-coronavirus-covid19/6149989/

For More Details on the CA Governor's Office Guidelines for Stages of Reopening:

https://www.gov.ca.gov/2020/04/28/governor-newsom-provides-update-on-californias-pandemic-resilience-roadmap/

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UPDATE AS OF MARCH 20, 2020:

SINCE THE PUBLICATION ON MARCH 14, 2020 OF THE ANNOUNCEMENT BELOW, ADDITIONAL ACTIONS BY THE U.S. PRESIDENT, CALIFORNIA GOVERNOR, & MAYOR OF LOS ANGELES NECESSITATED FURTHER ADJUSTMENT TO OUR OPERATIONS. EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY, PCF-LA WILL OFFER A SUNDAY MORNING 10AM SERVICE EXCLUSIVELY ONLINE ONLY. ALL OTHER GATHERINGS ON PCF-LA PROPERTY ARE SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE IN THE INTEREST OF PUBLIC SAFETY.

LET'S ALL PLEASE CONTINUE TO WORSHIP TOGETHER AS THE CHURCH IN OUR HOMES, JOINING TOGETHER ONLINE ON SUNDAY MORNINGS & PRAYING TOGETHER NIGHTLY AT 7PM AS PART OF OUR #COVID1900 PRAYER INITIATIVE. GOD IS BRINGING FORTH A HARVEST EVEN IN THE MIDST OF HARDSHIP!

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To the Beloved Family of PCF-LA,

We’re all well aware now of COVID-19 (the coronavirus pandemic) and the many expanding impacts it is making on our daily lives. I’m writing to encourage you: “Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9, NIV), “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but one of power, love, and sound judgment” (2 Timothy 1:7, CSB). The PCF leadership and I have attended carefully in recent days to the guidance of our denominational leadership, government authorities, public health agencies, medical experts, and the admonitions of the Lord in His word, by His Spirit, as we’ve prayed. Together, in light of these many recommendations and with confident conviction from God, we’ve determined the following steps to share with you (summarized in brief below, with a more detailed explanation afterward).

SUMMARY IN BRIEF:

  • Don’t Panic—Pray!

  • Stream the Sunday Service Live Online With Us From Home

  • Please Continue to Make Your Tithes & Offerings to PCF Online or Via Mail

  • Children’s Sunday School Classes Will Be Closed For Now

  • Seniors & Discovery Groups Will Not Meet For Now

  • Youth Group & PSOM Are On Hiatus Until Further Notice

  • Bible Studies & Cell Group Meetings Must Be Conducted via Teleconferencing or Online ONLY

  • The President has declared tomorrow, Sunday March 15, a National Day of Prayer--whether in person or online, let's pray together!

DETAILED EXPLANATIONS:

DON’T PANIC, BUT DO PRAY!

There’s a spirit of fear at work in the land. More testing for COVID-19 is coming and that means more people will be found to have the virus or be in need of treatment. As the Body of Christ, we are those who want to lead the way in showing care, compassion, and prayer for those in need, among ourselves and around the world, thinking of others first, operating in wisdom to avoid spreading illness or false information but also operating in faith that spreads the Good News of God and demonstrates faith in His Name. Hope for the best; prepare for the worst; pray (and believe) for the miraculous! “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10 (NIV).

SERVICE SCHEDULE

PCF-LA WILL gather in limited numbers for our Sunday morning worship service at 10AM tomorrow, March 15, 2020, while observing a restriction on the number of people congregating so that we can maintain "social distancing" of six feet between individuals (family members from the same home can cluster together). If we reach a maximum level of attendance, we will respectfully ask any others arriving to return home to stream the service online instead, out of consideration for the safety and well-being of our entire community.

ONLINE STREAMING

Live online streaming of the Sunday morning worship service will continue to be offered via our website, myPCF.org (click on the “Watch Live” bar at the top of the webpage). While archived recordings of the prior service can be accessed later, we encourage you to join us LIVE so that we can be aligned in the Spirit and maintain the essential commonality and communion of faith at the same time even though we’re not all in the same space. (Also, remember to contact us with your PRAYER REQUESTS so we can be praying for you.)

ONLINE GIVING

During this unusual period of challenge, we want to remind you that your support in prayer and financial giving to the Lord’s work in and through PCF-LA via your tithes & offerings has never been more important in maintaining the vitality of our community and calling. Please continue to give your tithes & offerings online via our website (simply click the “Give” button and then click on “Donate and follow the instructions to create a one-time gift or set-up a recurring gift) or mail your check to the church office at 2235 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90057. We’re confident in your faithfulness and generosity because PCF is a body of cheerful givers who serve a faithful and generous God.

ALL PROGRAMS AND GATHERINGS ON THE PCF-LA CAMPUS ARE ON HIATUS UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE AS A PREVENTATIVE PRECAUTION

  • Praise School of Ministry will NOT hold classes during this period, but will instead lengthen the hiatus scheduled for tomorrow to extend at least until May.

  • The in-person gathering of any PCF sponsored or affiliated offsite cell groups and Bible studies shall be on hiatus until further notice in order to comply with the legal restrictions currently imposed. However, we urge cell group leaders & members to investigate online or teleconferencing platforms (like FaceTime or Zoom) to facilitate connection without leaving home.

  • All other in-person events or special programs currently on the PCF calendar prior to April 12 are cancelled. Any events scheduled beyond April 12 and onward are now considered as tentative. We will provide updates via our website, email, and our social media feeds as time progresses as to the status of these events.

Despite the length of this letter, there’s more to be said and potentially more questions you may wish answered. You can contact us via the church website or by writing an email to info@myPCF.org if you’d like to share anything or simply need further information. Also, joining with us online, you will hear more from me about what I’ve heard from the Lord for us as a body in this season. Suffice it to say, these decisions have not been easy to make; the circumstances are changing every day, and honestly no one can predict with certainty at this point precisely what will come next. As believers, though, we prepare and proceed with confidence in Christ, knowing that “in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28, NIV).

We are people who are called by Him for a purpose. Even in what may feel like the chaos of this present moment, that purpose is precisely spelled out in Scripture: In 2 Chronicles 7:13-14, the Lord says that when the entire land faces natural crises such as an epidemic, “if My people, who are called by My Name will humble themselves & pray & seek My face & turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin & will heal their land” (NIV). In short, now more than ever is a time for our corporate PRAYER as the people of God and the Body of Christ.

Indeed, U.S. President Donald Trump has called for tomorrow, Sunday March 15, 2020 to be a national day of prayer for God’s help in the face of this pandemic. PCF-LA has heard that call and will heed the charge to pray to God for healing in the land, not only tomorrow but also in all the days to come.

Standing in Faith With You,

Pastor Courtney

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