Coronavirus Updates

Bookmark this page and check back regularly for updates regarding how we are dealing with the challenges of the coronavirus outbreak.

Friday 28th March

I want to bring you a message from the elders at Bellevue Chapel as we all adjust to life in Scotland in the midst of the Corona virus.

As we face changes to our daily routines, as we face great uncertainty over what the next few weeks and months will bring, and as we are anxious about our own health and that of our loved ones, let’s make sure we keep our eyes fixed on the One who is unchanging, the One who knows the end from the beginning and the One who is the giver and sustainer of all life.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

Jesus is the Light of the world, He is the good Shepherd and He is the Resurrection and the Life.

Let us keep these truths at the front of our minds and pray that they would encourage our hearts and feed our souls.

As elders we have been meeting regularly to pray and plan how we continue to Be church over the next few months. 

Many of you made use of the online service content that was put together for last Sunday. Thanks to those who pulled that together for us! 

We must do all we can to maintain our devotion to hearing from God’s Word, to sharing fellowship, to breaking bread together and to prayer. 

As time goes on we will adapt and work out the best ways to deliver content electronically and by physical mail.

If you are able to help with compiling and editing electronic content please let us know!

This Sunday we will provide similar material as we continue our teaching series in Matthew and Revelation.

We are also going to attempt to host a time of communion by using Zoom.

Joining instructions will be posted on the Website. It is possible to join by browser, smart phone and also regular landline phones. 

So, in this continued period of social distancing and self-isolation I want to encourage each of us to Stay Connected….

  1. Connected to Jesus -
  • As followers of Jesus we are Connected to Him – let’s do all we can to keep that connection close and strong.
  • Danger of watching the news too much and letting that influence our hearts and souls
  • Also a danger in filling our lives with social media or with box sets and not leaving space for God
  • Can I encourage all of us to make sure our minds and hearts and souls are being fed by God’s Word. Submerge your life in God’s Word. Remind yourselves of His promises. Invest time in digging into His Word and in Prayer.
  • He has something to say to each of us during this time!
  1. Connected to one another
  • As parts of the body of Christ we are all connected to each other
  • We are not able to meet physically, but we can make use of our phones, email and video calls. We can still post cards and letters and pray for each other.
  • Home Groups are going to play an important part as we seek to encourage and care for each other
  • If you are not currently in a Home Group and would like to connect with one, then please get in touch with myself or any or the elders
  • If you are part of a Home Group why not invite others to join up 
  • Home Groups have been meeting using Zoom and WhatsApp and other technologies.
  • So let’s stay connected to one another!
  • Why not commit to phoning one other person from the fellowship each day. 
  • Find out how they are and what you can pray for them.
  1. Be Connectors
  • As we seek to keep connections in our fellowship we should also be mindful of the many in our communities that are struggling
  • Are there ways we can connect with neighbours?
  • Phone them, post a note through their door
  • How can we bring the Hope of Jesus to those that don’t know Him?
  • Times of crises present great opportunities for the Gospel 
  • Pray for our neighbours and colleagues
  • Pray for our leaders
  • Pray for our NHS and frontline workers
  • Pray for our brothers and sisters around the UK and the World
  • Turn the information that we receive from TV and the internet into prayers!

With all the restrictions in place it is difficult to know how as church we can serve those around us. Please pray about this – how best can we be a Light in our communities.

Let me update you on a couple of things we are doing:

  1. The church notice boards will advertise an email address where people can submit prayer requests
  2. We are sending money to support the work of Claudia and Francesco in Genova as they seek to minister into the lives of Italian believers – many who are struggling both spiritually and materially.

This Sunday morning the elders are meeting to pray. And we will be praying big prayers like those of Paul in Ephesians 1:

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms

In these difficult times, let’s give thanks for the Hope that we have in Jesus, let’s share that Hope with each other and those that we are able to connect with and let’s remember that the power of God is at work in our lives through Jesus.

Grace and Peace to all of you.

Stay connected and keep praying.

 

Thursday 19th March

We wanted to update you on some of the plans to adjust to a new way of being church in this time of uncertainty.
 
Before we do, can we remind ourselves that in a changing world, we trust in an unchanging God.  Hebrews 13 v 8 tells us that ‘Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever’.  His promises, His attributes, His love never change.  When all else changes, we trust in our unchanging God.  May we look to God and may we be seen as God’s people in this world.
 
It will be important over these weeks to stay connected.  Home groups will be a great connection point.  If you are not already connected to a home group, we would encourage you to do so.  Be adopted into a home group and if you would like to do this, please let Annemarie know and she can point you in the right direction.
 
This Sunday, it’s going to be different, but we will have a full program of services available at https://www.bellevuechapel.org/sunday
 
The All Age Service will come to you online, including songs, prayer, notices (!), and Christiaan bringing us the next message in the Matthew series.  We’ll be looking at Matthew 15:32 – 16:12 – The Bread of Life.  Have a good read over these familiar verses before Sunday and try to spot something you hadn’t noticed before.
 
The BAC children will have their own program sent to them directly - they’ll be looking at Joshua this Sunday.
 
For the Evening Service, David will be continuing the series in Revelation – Revealing Jesus – God’s victory.
 
Of course, when the various parts of the Sunday program are delivered, you can choose when you access them.  However, you might find it useful to establish a rhythm and structure, particularly to your Sundays, to fully engage with the services and with our scattered church.  This will be particularly important for Communion.  We plan to provide an introduction to communion and then invite the church to share communion at 7.30pm, wherever you are.  Families can share in this time and if you are in a smaller group or alone or would prefer, then call someone or use zoom or other video conferencing facilities to connect with someone else to share in this time.  It will be exciting to think that we will be gathered virtually as a church to share in this important remembrance of the Lord Jesus.
 
The prayer ministry is also up and running, and at this stage if you have any particular prayer requests, contact the Pastoral Team.
 
 
We want to encourage all to use this time to draw closer to God, to read His Word, to pray and to connect and have fellowship with others in the church.   We could easily spend much time watching the news agenda, but in the midst of this challenging time, let us take the opportunity to use our time wisely.  We must also seek to be missional when others around us have no hope - ‘Without God and without hope in this world’.  We can do it where we are, with our neighbours, our work colleagues and families.  Perhaps this time will provide one of our greatest opportunities to share the hope that we have.  One of our church members offered to pray for her colleagues and was overwhelmed by the response.
 
We will be working hard on this over the coming days and inevitably what we do will evolve.  But we are very much in business as a church!  We trust in the unchanging God.  Our anchor is secure.
 
The Elders

 
Prayer Points
- Pray that God would intervene to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

- Pray for safety and good health for every household represented in the fellowship and particularly for the vulnerable.

- Pray that we might be able to serve our neighbours in practical ways. To whom can you say “how can I help?”?

- Pray that we might be able to speak the Good News of Jesus to our neighbours. 

- Pray that we might open our ears to the voice of our Father in Heaven through these difficult days. What is God saying to us?

-Pray that we might love each other well in the weeks ahead.

 

Tuesday 17th March

Following the new guidance from the Government yesterday we wanted to update you on how we will continue as Church. Unfortunately, for the foreseeable future we will not be able to operate any of our normal organised activities. Specifically this means that all of our gathered groups this week and services on Sunday are cancelled.

This is difficult for everyone; meeting in person to share fellowship, pray, worship, learn from Scripture and break bread is at the very heart of church life. We have not taken this decision lightly but, taking into account the Government’s direction and our desire to take seriously our responsibility to the health and wellbeing of our communities, we believe this is the right thing to do.

In the weeks ahead we hope to develop different ways for us to function well as a community of God’s people. This week our priorities are as follows:

Prayer: we would invite everyone to make 8 - 9pm tonight (Tuesday) an hour of dedicated prayer. Pray at home in your families, get on the phone with someone, FaceTime...however you can (virtually) get together, please pray. There are some prayer points below.

Fellowship: Home Groups won’t meet this week but it may be that arrangements can be made for groups to connect on phone calls or online. Please also keep getting in touch with each other and let’s particularly support those in the fellowship with particular needs.

God’s Word: we would hope at the very least to circulate a recorded sermon this Sunday. More on that to follow!

Jesus says: “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me.” (John 14: 1)

With much love in our Lord Jesus,

The Elders

Prayer Points

  • Pray that God would intervene to stop the spread of the coronavirus
  • Pray for safety and good health for every household represented in the fellowship and particularly for the vulnerable.
  • Pray that we might be able to serve our neighbours in practical ways. To whom can you say “how can I help?”
  • Pray that we might be able to speak the Good News of Jesus to our neighbours. 
  • Pray that we might open our ears to the voice of our Father in Heaven through these difficult days. What is God saying to us?
  • Pray that we might love each other well in the weeks ahead

 

Saturday 14th March

With the developing situation with regard to the Coronavirus we wanted to let you know that Church will be going ahead as usual tomorrow. However, please do follow the advice that is being given by the health authorities and do not come to Church if you have a new continuous cough and/or a fever or high temperature. Please also follow the advice about hand washing etc. We will be taking appropriate precautions at church (e.g. the way in which we organise communion).

Also, if you are concerned about your own vulnerability (perhaps due to an underlying health condition) then please feel free not to come to church if that is the prudent thing to do. Don’t worry if you are on a rota or have a particular responsibility; there are plenty of people to fill in!

It’s also important that we let God speak to us through His word in the midst of this difficult situation:

- Jesus says “Do not be afraid.” We do not know what is going to happen or how serious the situation may become. We will feel anxious for our families and loved ones. But Jesus promises that He is with us in every situation.

- God is sovereign: He knows the end from the beginning and ultimately we are safe in His hands.

- Love your neighbour: we are called to serve the world in which we live. Let’s care for each other and our friends, colleagues and neighbours. If we are not sure what to say in conversation then perhaps start with “don’t be afraid” and “how can I help you?”

- Keep praying:

  • Pray that our hearts would not be overwhelmed with anxiety but that our eyes would be opened to see God afresh that we might trust in him.
  • Pray that God would intervene and stop the spread of the virus.
  • Pray that as a Church we would be courageous in loving and serving our neighbours.

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12: 12.

With much love in the Lord Jesus,

The Elders