Mon | Jan 25, 2021

Church must make a global impact amid COVID-19, leaders warn

Published:Sunday | March 22, 2020 | 12:22 AM

With the Government’s announcement forbidding large gatherings and encouraging social distancing due to the national outbreak of the new coronavirus, COVID-19, churches in Jamaica have been forced to shut their doors, much to the displeasure of many.

Some have invited their congregations to join them online for services while others encourage saints to use the time to worship on their own and with their families.

While there are those who have classed such announcements as an act of fear and the absence of faith, others have applauded the move as being wise.

Sharing her thoughts on the issue, Christian author Colleen Cohen revealed that she is ashamed of the way in which many in the body of Christ have been handling the period based on what she describes as their nonsensical and illogical behaviour towards it.

“Persons who are operating out of a lack of knowledge, please cease from embarrassing the Kingdom. I believe this is the greatest time for the Church to make a global impact and be a force for good! Let us, therefore, shift our focus and look at the bigger picture.

Time to arise

We are the Church, not the building, and now is our time to arise in prayer with our families and defeat COVID-19. Wisdom always presents new opportunities and new ideas in the face of great challenges.

How the Church responds to COVID-19 and the instructions of the Government can either be a blessing or a curse. Please, for the good of all, let our responses be a blessing!” she said.

Joining the conversation, Christian blogger and author Amoy Lawrence, who goes by The Anointed Writer, said: “I believe that now is the time when Christians will truly understand the importance and necessity of having a personal relationship with Christ. Many have fallen into the routine of going to church and being in that building. However, the worship ends with the benediction.

Now, more than ever, persons need to cultivate that personal relationship and understand that a strong, Christian faith is fuelled by time spent in the secret place.”

Reiterating the significance of maintaining a personal relationship with God in this time of separation and sharing a reminder of the omnipotent and omnipresent abilities of God, Shane Bennett, who is a member of his church’s praise team, also spoke about the importance of maintaining fellowship among the saints.

“Don’t forsake the assembly of ourselves together as the Bible admonishes us. So if you can’t see each other physically, find other ways to connect.

When Paul was detained in prison, he wrote letters to the Church, so likewise, because we are so isolated, we have to find another means to communicate with each other and understand we are still a body of Christians who are worshipping together. You might have to have Bible studies over the phone, via Skype, WhatsApp, or whatever means are available to you. Just ensure that you are aware, loved, and all a part of the body,” Bennett said.