Our church in Africa has been growing and prospering during the pandemic, despite two periods of several months in which services were exclusively online. In fact, several recent in-person services have set attendance records. We follow the prescribed protocol for coronavirus protection, including distance, masks, temperature checks, and hand-washing. We previously met indoors in our yet-to-open surgical center, but as that facility is now loaned to the government’s health department as the provincial COVID treatment center, we worship on the pavilion outside it.
This Sunday, I arrived early with the two boys who come with me, because we were on the set-up crew for that week. Along with another volunteer, we swept the concrete floor and set up chairs, then I then prayed and conversed with arriving congregants until the service started. After singing, prayer, and Scripture reading, the sermon from Hebrews 11:24-26 showed us that Moses gave up riches, pleasures, and social status in Egypt in order to be identified with God’s people, moved by a powerful faith.
After the service, the church membership met to consider the cases of three members who fell into sin some months ago. Following their initial confession and a period of counseling and evaluation of their repentance, the church’s leadership brought them before the congregation to present their request to be reinstated as members, and all three were accepted. Praise be to God for the restored fellowship with Him and others made possible by Christ’s death on the cross for our sins!