CCFDL and Covid-19

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UPDATE 7/30/2020

Community Church Family-
By now most of you have heard Governor Evers has issued a state-wide mandate to wear masks indoors through the end of September. I immediately reached out to our District Executive Minister, Ken Nabi, for his counsel. Converge Districts in other states have experienced these kinds of mandates. Those churches have been advised to accommodate the restrictions. Let’s remember our state government is not asking us to do something immoral or sinful. We are not being asked to deny our faith or to stop meeting. In fact, churches are not being targeted in this order. It affects everyone equally. We need to take a posture of humility, regardless of how we feel about this issue. 
 
Starting this Sunday, August 2, we will require face-masks (except for those with breathing problems according to the mandate) for our 9:00 a.m. indoor worship service as well as during the week in our building. For those who struggle with wearing a mask we still offer the 7:30 a.m. outdoor service (weather permitting) and the online service at 9 a.m. Through this entire time we have sought to provide options for people to worship together. We will continue to do so. 
 
Please use this as an opportunity to love one another, not judge one another. It’s not us verses them. It’s us. May we use this opportunity to humble ourselves and pray. Wearing masks does not stop us from our mission: to develop gospel-centered disciples sharing the hope of Christ to transform lives. Let’s keep our eyes on our mission. We may not have uniformity in this course of action, but we can still have unity. We have a chance to live out what the church at Ephesus was called to do: 
 
Walk worthy of the calling you have received, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace (Ephesians 4:2-3).
 
Notice we don’t have to find unity. We already have it through God’s Spirit. Our call is to “keep the unity.” May it be so! 
 
Love In Christ,
 
Pastor Adam
 

 

UPDATE 7/2/2020

Happy Fourth of July Community Church!
I hope you are enjoying the beginning of the holiday weekend.
 
In case you have not heard, this Sunday July 5 we are opening up our building for our 9 a.m. service.
 
Here is what you can expect (see below and watch this video):
-Doors will be propped open.
-Green, yellow and red bracelets will be available to show your comfort level of interaction with others (green=handshakes, close up conversation, yellow=okay with talking but not touching, red=Keeping my distance). We hope this will take away some of the awkwardness we all feel.
-Masks are not required but encouraged.
-Communion elements will be available for individual pick up, offering baskets available as you come into the auditorium.
-No coffee or refreshments.
-No child care available.
-Seating available in the Auditorium, Cafe, Parenting Room and Multi-Purpose Room (round tables, space for kids to run around, color their clipboard sheets).
-Back rows of areas for those who are not comfortable around people singing.
 
Our hope is you will experience encouragementfellowshipchallenge from God’s Word in 1 Peter 1:13-25 and the Holy Spirit’s comfort.
 
As the summer has worn on the 10:45 outdoor service is getting to be too hot. We are going to try an experiment for July. Starting this Sunday, July 5, we will move the outdoor service to 7:30 a.m. We can call it the early bird service!
 
If you are not yet comfortable moving indoors or coming to the early outdoor service, that is completely fine! Stay home and watch the online service at 9 a.m. or invite a couple friends to join you.
 
We are one church, worshiping the Lord together, hearing the same message from God’s Word, taking communion together. May this Sunday be a blessing to you. I look forward to it.
 
In Christ,
 
Pastor Adam
 
 

UPDATE 6/26/2020

Hello Community Church family-
This Sunday we will finish out the month of June with the online service at 9 a.m. and the outdoor service at 10:45 (the weather looks perfect again!).
 
The Church Council has been discussing the process of reopening our church and praying for the Spirit’s wisdom and guidance. The Council represents the church well – we had a variety of feelings and opinions on how to best reopen. I am thankful that uniformity is not required to have unity. We do not all need to think the same way about this, but we all need to aim for unity. Let us be mindful of this as we move forward together as a church family.
 
The Council decided to open the church building for public worship services starting July 5. The 9:00 a.m. service will be indoors and we will also continue to provide the outdoor service at 10:45 a.m. (weather permitting). Of course, we will continue to offer the online service at 9 a.m. and you have our blessing to stay home and participate online. You could even gather a few friends or your small group and watch together!
 
What can I expect for the indoor service at 9:00 a.m.?
We will not require masks, but we will encourage people to feel free to wear masks. We will encourage physical distancing (but let us be social!), including asking people to not use certain rows in the auditorium. The cafe will not be serving refreshments, but we will have the service live streamed into the cafe, as is our custom :). We will also have the service streaming live into the MPR on a big screen. Since no child care will be provided young families will have the option to watch in the MPR so their kids move around freely or color their clipboard activities on spread out tables. We will have hand sanitizing stations around the building, the doors will be propped open, communion elements will be available for pick up at tables and offerings will be collected in baskets as people walk in. Our greeters will not shake hands, but happily wave “hello!” In every way we want this to be a celebration and a welcoming experience for all. We will sing during the service and those not comfortable being around those who sing can sit toward the back as we have been doing in the outdoor service.
 
It is our desire to bring the body back together and trust the Lord. We are exhorted in Hebrews 10:24-25:
 
And let us consider one another in order to provoke love and good works, not neglecting to gather together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day approaching.
 
The church at this time was also facing physical danger. Not a virus, but persecution. Yet the church was instructed to not neglect gathering together. We believe it’s time to gather together, be wise as we do and trust the Lord. We need each other now, more than ever. So I look forward to seeing you, either online, outdoors or in the building (starting July 5).
 
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit (Philippians 4:23).
 
Adam Utecht
Sr. Pastor
Community Church, Fond du Lac
 
 

UPDATE 6/20/2020

Hello Community Church!
 
We are working our way through June and have had a great experience the last two weekends at our 10:45 outdoor service. While the weather looked iffy all week, it looks like Sunday will be another great day to worship together outside. Remember, we have masks available and ask you to spread out with your own lawn chairs or blankets. The service will not be more than one hour and you are free to stick around and say hello to people. Note: if the weather turns bad we will cancel our public service (a notice will go out on Facebook/Instagram Sunday morning). In the case of a rainout, we would encourage you to watch the online service with some friends and enjoy small group fellowship. Our plan is to continue outdoor services for the next two Sundays and then prayerfully evaluate potential changes for July. The Council has already begun preliminary conversation about how exactly to open up the building for public services. Please pray for wisdom for us as we meet on Monday night at 5:30 p.m.
 
In addition to Sunday morning services we are also going to formulate a plan for “flipping the switch” to open. This means unlocking the building during office hours, providing the building for small groups and events to meet, and support staff working in the building again. We do not know exactly when we will flip the switch, but we will be praying about it and talking about it in the weeks to come.  There is a broad spectrum of thoughts, opinions, feelings, and strategies regarding moving back into the building. I am sure a number of people are wishing we would have been meeting in the building since May. I am also sure that a number of people strongly feel we should not be meeting in the building until the fall. And some people swing back and forth depending on the latest numbers and news. I would like to ask you to be gracious with our Church Council as we have been put in a very difficult situation in which we cannot please everyone. By making one decision (i.e. what to do with masks) we are upsetting one group while making another group satisfied (and vice versa). Please extend grace not only to one another, but also to our church leadership. We are for you and desire to shepherd the body well.
 

This week on my Wednesday at 3 p.m. Facebook Live I read Romans 15:1, “Now we who are strong have an obligation to bear the weaknesses of those without strength, and not to please ourselves. Each one of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to build him up.” I find this to be a timely word for our church. Let’s be willing to bear the weaknesses of those without strength. Let’s aim not to please ourselves but our neighbors. 

Let us continue to lay down our “rights” for the sake of others. Let us continue to be gracious and humble in our speech and not judge the motives of others. Let us think the best of others. And let us pray that our hearts and minds would be focused on the mission to develop gospel-centered disciples sharing the hope of Christ to transform lives. We have a golden opportunity to be salt and light in our community. May we not miss this opportunity because we are afraid of being wrong or afraid of what might happen to us. As we dive into 1 Peter this Sunday, we are exiles here – this really isn’t our country. We are temporary residents looking ahead to our eternal home. Let’s take some people with us!

In Christ,
 
Adam Utecht
Sr. Pastor
Community Church, Fond du Lac

 

UPDATE 4/29/2020

Hello Community Church!

I hope you are doing well through this difficult time.

I’m tired. Tired of not seeing you. Tired of places being shut down. Tired of social distancing (I am a physical touch guy). I understand the need for it, but it’s getting old!

As I have thought about this I realize what I need – what we all need – is the Holy Spirit to bring us comfort.

For just as the sufferings of Christ overflow to us, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation. If we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings that we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that as you share in the sufferings, so you will also share in the comfort. -2 Cor. 1:5-7

A song came out five years ago that really captures the desire of my weary heart. Watch it here.

I have a few things I’d like to communicate with you this week:

  1. Mother’s Dayis coming up (May 10). Moms, please send us pictures of what you have been doing with your kids during this time. Could be serious or just fun. We will be putting together a special video for our service on May 10. E-mail your pictures to .
  2. Check out my weekly Wednesday Facebook LIVE(at 3p.m.) on our church page. Also, check out the CCFDL connections page We want to keep you connected with one another and equip you to help you through this challenging time. Also, on Friday, May 1 we will post the conversation I had with Pastor Mihai in Galati, Romania.
  3. Text your questionsfor this Sunday’s LIVE Q and A: 920-550-1585. You don’t have to wait until Sunday morning. This week my wife, Jill, will join me for the Q and A. We also be taking communion, so pick up your elements at our office Thursday or pick up some crackers and juice at the store before Sunday. Pastor Mark will lead our communion time. Our text this Sunday is Galatians 5:13-25 (Let the Spirit Win).

See you Sunday!

Pastor Adam Utecht

 

UPDATE 3/25/2020

 
Hello from a very quiet and lonely church office!
We hope you are doing well in your home (or essential work place). In order to keep up solid communication we have several things we would like to communicate with you:
 
1. After Governor Evers’ 30 day “safer at home” edict went into effect today (March 25) our church will not need to make any major changes. We pivoted over the last few weeks when the COVID-19 warnings went out and mobilized much of our staff to work from home. This past Sunday we provided a live stream video of the worship service with less than ten people in the building. This week we will do the same.
Here is the specific wording under sub-section “h” defining church groups as a limited exception to the prohibition to gather:
 
h. Weddings, funerals, and religious entities.
Religious facilities, entities, groups, and gatherings, and weddings and funerals,
except that any gathering shall include fewer than 10 people in
a room or confined space at a time and individuals shall adhere
to Social Distancing Requirements as much as possible.
 
I called our State Representative’s office yesterday to make sure we could keep our building “open”  with limited staff and continue to produce a live stream of our Sunday service with less than ten people in the building. He said we were in alignment with the Governor’s order. Reminder: the live stream is only for the worship/tech team and essential staff, so please stay home and watch! You can watch on Facebook or go to our website for the live feed. Please join us and ask questions by texting 920-550-1585 (live Q and A after the sermon). If you need help during the week, please call the church 922-1477 or drop by. Someone will be here Monday-Thursday.
 
2. We encourage you, as you are able, to reach out to others! Call people in your small group or Bible study to check up on them. Think about who you usually talk to in the cafe between services and give them a call. Use FaceTime, Facebook Messenger or Skype. Pray for one another.
 
3. We are working on memorizing Psalm 46 as a church family. Click here for the video I posted on Monday with the actions and work on the first three verses. If you are so bold, film yourself or your family reciting the first there verses (record holding your phone horizontally, not vertically) and e-mail the video to  by Friday. You might end up on the Live Stream this Sunday! It will be fun to see each other reciting these encouraging verses.
 
4. If you are looking for great videos to watch for yourself or your family, check out Right Now Media. You can get FREE access by e-mailing Chris at Thousands of Bible study videos and fun videos for kids are available to you.
 
5. Thank you for all who have responded to our call for help. We have had a number of gas/grocery gift cards donated as well as generous donations to the compassion fund. We are doing our best to distribute these gifts to all who are in need. This is how the church is being the church outside the walls! If you have a need, please do not hesitate to contact Maggie at . We will do our best to help you in this difficult time.
 
I love the prayer of Asa in 2 Chronicles 14:11 when he was about to face his enemies:
 
“O Lord, there is none like you to help, between the mighty and the weak. Help us, O Lord our God, for we rely on you
 
May this be our prayer!
In Christ,
 
Adam Utecht

 

UPDATE 3/19/2020

It is amazing how life can change in one week. A week ago I did not think the Coronavirus was something to be overly concerned about. I was so wrong! The impact of this virus is rapid and far reaching. This week Governor Evers placed a ban on public gatherings exceeding ten people. Schools have been cancelled indefinitely. Our City Manager declared a state of emergency, requiring all government meetings to be held online. The economic impact is hitting many of us hard maybe you have been laid off or lost your job or you are watching the value of your retirement accounts dwindle. Fear is the automatic response

However, in moments like these we must learn to trust in the Lord. Psalm 20:7 says

Some trust in chariots and some in horses for health, security, or bank accounts)but we trust in the name of the Lord our God

Will we choose to trust in the Lord? I hope we will. Lets trust the Lord together. But how can we do anything together if we must practice social distancing? Until further notice our Sunday morning worship will only be online at 9 a.m. How can we stay connected

We must learn to be intentional and creative in this season (and it is only a season)

Be intentional by checking our Facebook Page, website (www.ccfdl.org) and email. If you are not on our churchwide email list, now is a good time to join. We are doing our best to regularly communicate via email. There are other ways we communicate (Facebook page, website, app), but email is the best way to disseminate detailed information now that we are not able to meet together on Sunday mornings in person. If you have not been getting emails from us, please email Maggie at mmatysik@ccfdl.org and ask to be added

Be creative by setting up a prayer calendar pray for one person or family every day. Text or call them and ask them how you can pray for them. Sign up for a small group by filling out your info at www.ccfdl.org/card. We will be utilizing Zoom (group video calls) in our small groups. We can still see each other, pray for each other, study the Bible together and encourage one another. Each Wednesday I will be checking in with the church family via Facebook Live at 3 p.m. Also, utilize our church subscription to Right Now Media (access to thousands of Bible Study videos and fun, clean shows for kids). For your free access, contact cklausen@ccfdl.org. We do not know how long COVID19 will last, but God does. And He is faithful. He will sustain us through it. Your continued financial support of CC is appreciated. Give online easily and securely www.ccfdl.org/giving. Send checks to our office (address below). Thank you so very much

In Christ

Pastor Adam 

I Cor. 15:58 

3/12/2020

Dear Community Church family,


You may be wondering what proactive steps Community Church is taking, and what you can do, in light of the spread of the Coronavirus COVID-19 strain.

This Sunday March 15 we will not be holding a public service on our campus on Streblow Drive, including the Bible Connections Class, LifeLab, Children’s Ministry, and all other classes.  

You can join us live on Facebook at 9 a.m. https://www.facebook.com/ccfdl/

Please join us for this special time of interactive worship and a special message from Pastor Adam.

Also, we have made the difficult decision to postpone The Church Has Left the Building on March 22.

To be forthright, until today I have felt the response to the Coronavirus has been an unnecessary overreaction. My thinking has changed the more I have read about the potential of this virus. In order to love and care for others we need to stay separate for this weekend.

What about other events like Community Groups (Small groups, Bible Studies, Classes) and Community Youth? These will continue as long as the group leaders are able to lead and people remain healthy. These are some of the most important times for us to be the church. Fellowship is essential for us, especially in times like these.

Also, the church building will remain open and function as normal during this time. Drop by sometime and say hello to us next week!

This may not blow over in a week. It could take four weeks or longer before things may return back to normal. The Council, Staff, Management Team and I will collaborate on a plan to reconvene as a church family. Until this crisis ends we will need to “do church” differently, so be ready to try new things! Honestly I am excited for what this will do for our church and the Fond du Lac community. There will be many opportunities for us to be gospel-centered disciples in the weeks ahead. Seize those moments!

While there is growing uncertainty in our world, our God is in control and His perfect love drives out fear. Our best response as Christ followers will balance wisdom, love, and prayer.

First, we encourage you to pray. Pray for healing of those who are affected, for protection and peace for those living in anxiety, and for government agencies and healthcare professionals in our County.

Second, we need to practice good hygiene:

  • Do what your mom taught you: wash your hands regularly (for 20 seconds)!
  • If you are sick, have a fever or a cough, please take good care of yourself and stay home.
  • Wait two weeks to come to any Community Church activity after traveling to a Level 2 or 3 country.
  • Let us know right away if you test positive for the virus and have been to any recent church activities.
  • We will be ramping up our sanitizing practices at church in the weeks to come. 

Third, we encourage you to continue your financial support of Community Church. Even if we cannot meet as a whole church family, we still have ongoing financial commitments to be met. You can give via the mobile app or click: https://ccfdl.org/giving/ to get started. Or you can send a check in the mail to N6717 Streblow Dr. Fond du Lac, WI 54937. Thank you!

Finally, in times of uncertainty I’ve always found Psalm 46 to be comforting:
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. (Psalm 46:1–3).

In Christ,

Pastor Adam Utecht for Community Church