COVID-19 Resources

 

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Executive Office Statement Regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19)

March 12, 2020

Antioch, TN—With growing concerns regarding coronavirus (COVID-19), recently declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, the Executive Office of the National Association of Free Will Baptists encourages all churches and members to take caution, use common sense, and take appropriate measures to help curtail the spread of the virus.

“We must treat this virus with the seriousness it deserves,” noted Executive Secretary Eddie Moody. “At the same time, we must not give in to panic and fear; instead, remember that our faith in Christ and the hope of the gospel give believers a firm foundation in times of personal and international crisis. The coronavirus, as terrible as it is, provides a wonderful opportunity to demonstrate faith, courage, and compassion to our communities.”

Moody urges all Free Will Baptists to follow the simple recommendations issued by the Center for Disease Control:

  • Wash hands often.
  • Avoid close contact with others who are sick (especially in affected communities).
  • Protect others by staying home if sick, covering coughing and sneezes, wearing a Facemask when sick, and cleaning and disinfecting frequently-touched surfaces.
  • Understand the elderly and those with pre-existing health conditions are at greatest risk.

Additionally, churches and church members are urged to work closely with community leaders and government officials in local and regional efforts to contain hotspots and outbreak points.

“Each church must consider its own context and risk regarding services and gatherings,” Moody noted. “For instance: if the virus continues to spread in the U.S., churches in highly affected regions may discourage those at greatest risk to the virus from attending services and meetings until the threat passes.”

Although the 2020 National Convention is still four months away, the Executive Office will closely monitor this situation. Changes or cancellation will only be considered in extreme circumstances.

The Executive Office encourages all Free Will Baptists to pray for the following during this health crisis:

  • Those battling the virus (both patients and medical personnel)
  • Missionaries and international ministry partners
  • Strength against fear and panic
  • Leadership decisions and direction
  • The hope of the gospel made clear to a frightened world