20 Sep 2021

Eastside Church: Covid-19 Mask Statement

Author: Bobby Valentine | Filed under: A Gathered People, Church, Contemporary Ethics, Culture, Discipleship, Grace, Love
Seems like a small thing to do for the sake of love

Bear one another’s burdens, and in this way, you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Gal 6.2)

Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others” (Phil 2.4)

Love is patient, love is kind, love is not envious … it does not insist on its own way … love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” (1 Cor 13.4-7)

At Eastside we desire to be a family that is rooted and grounded supremely in the love of God shown in our Lord Jesus and fills us through the Holy Spirit. We want to be that place where we bear one another’s burdens, where we look out for the well being of others (because we love them), we want to be a place where patience, kindness and going the extra mile happens because we fulfill the law of Christ.  In short, we all want nothing more than to be the people of the Jesus Creed.

For months during our lock-down, we practiced these things.  We shifted to online services and then outdoor ones precisely because we believe the texts just quoted. As vaccines were developed in answer to our prayers we have been able to gather together once again.  We confess with Israel of old, “I was glad when they said, ‘Let’s go to the house of the LORD” (Ps 122.1).

We are still to practice love, especially now. The apostle Paul reprimanded the Corinthians for not looking out for those in their congregation that were the most vulnerable. His entire instruction regarding the Lord’s Supper is grounded in the Corinthian callus attitude toward the vulnerable. In that setting the vulnerable were the poor.  In our setting, in our time, in reference to Covid-19 those people are the at-risk people among us.  As we watched out for one another during “lock-down,” so we must remain diligent in the practice of love as we come together.

It is because of love for one another that we

encourage everyone to get vaccinated

if you are not vaccinated to wear a mask

The Contra Costa County Health Department and the State of California requires that unvaccinated person wear a mask. In fact on Friday, they recommended masks for indoor gatherings. We have had several cases of Covid among us and we know that it is dangerous. With the rise of variants of Covid (like the Delta) we want to be cautious but more than that we simply want to show people that loving is second nature to us.

Love, Love, Love, Love
the Gospel in a word is Love,
Love they neighbor as they brother,
Love, Love, Love, Love …

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