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OUTDOOR CHURCH RESUMING TOMORROW!

10 am, Sunday, at Pleasant Hill Christian School, 1782 Pleasant Hill Road, Sebastopol.  (Click here for a map) We will be gathering outdoors in the back of the school where there is both sunshine and shade for seating.
We understand that there may be some in our church family who are not ready for this, but for those who are, we welcome you!  Here are the recommendations and guidelines (click here or read below) we have adopted in order to make this as safe as possible for all who attend.  Please read them over carefully.
June 13, 2020

Occidental Community Church family,

Romans 8:18. "I consider that our present sufferings are not worthy to be compared with the glory that will be revealed in us."

Tomorrow we will be concluding the study of 1 Thessalonians which we began when the current Shelter In Place order was established here in Sonoma County.  One of the themes of this letter is the Christian's hope of heaven when Christ returns to take us home.  The Salvation Army has an interesting way of honoring members or the Corps who have died and gone to heaven.  They use the term "promoted" when  referring to heaven.  Instead of listing the names of those who have died under "deaths", they are listed under "promotions".  The term "promoted to glory" was coined by Herbert Booth, son of the founder William Booth, following the death of his mother Catherine Booth, the Mother of the Salvation Army.  He also wrote a song entitled Promoted to Glory which is still used at their funerals today.

An old Christian once said, "Who would chide a servant for taking away the first course of a feast when the second consists of far greater delicacies?"   He went on to describe the first course as grace, but the second course as glory.  He said, "That course is as much better as the fruit is better than the blossom.  Who can regret that this present world is passing away, when he sees an eternal world of joy coming?"

You've probably heard the accusation brought against Christians that we are "so heavenly-minded that we are of no earthly good."  This is a spurious charge in most cases.  In fact, it is the Christian who has such a living hope that works the hardest and does the most to benefit the world in the here and now.  When you live each day having the assurance that the best is yet to come beyond the grave, you will work with a zeal that others without his hope do not know of.

Sue and I were married in 1965 in her home church in The Dalles, Oregon.  I was about to begin my senior year at San Jose Bible College and Sue her junior year.  Following the wedding ceremony we had only a week before our classes started for the fall semester.  We decided to take a quick honeymoon trip to Mount Olympia in Olympic National Park, Washington.  

It was late following the wedding ceremony, and we were able to drive only a few miles before we had to stop for the night.  The next day as we were driving off, we saw a sign for Red's Riding Stable in Corbett, Oregon, a few miles east of Portland.  We decided that our first activity as a married couple would be to go horseback riding.  Little did we know at the time that five years later I would be preaching at Corbett Christian Church, only a half mile up the hill from Red's.  

Sue had ridden more than I had, but neither of us had much experience on horses.  I remember that our horses were rather reluctant to go out, and they also knew instinctively that they had two novices on their backs.  The owner, Red, had to coax and prod the horses to make their way from the stables to the riding path across the field.  As we rode, it was a chore to keep them headed away from the stables.  But once we turned them toward home, we could hardly hold them back.  Their reluctance was gone.  They had renewed energy and spirit.  They were going home!  How like those horses we are.

The Christian will always labor for the Lord with more zeal and fervency, as he keeps before him the prospect of heaven, his real home.  J.B. Phillips has a very unique translation of the New Testament.  Here's how he translates Romans 18:18-19. "In my opinion, whatever we may have to go through now is less than nothing compared with the magnificent future God has prepared for us.  The whole creation is on tiptoe to see the wonderful sight of the sons of God coming into their own!"

THE BEST IS YET TO COME, WHEN ONE DAY WE WILL BE  PROMOTED TO GLORY!

Trusting in Him,
 Pastor Rick

Recommendations and Guidelines 
for Resuming Worship Services

The OCC guidelines are based on these official regulations:
California Department of Public Health publication, and Joint Sonoma County and Faith-based publication, May 2020.
Biblical guidelines: 1 Corinthians 12:25 - “There should be no division in the body, but members should have equal concern for one another.”

 

KEY COVID-19 PREVENTION PRACTICES

1. Physical Distancing: 6ft. distancing rule applies.

  • Family members may sit together, others 6 ft. apart.
  • Avoid physical contact when greeting one another at worship service.

2. Face Coverings

  • Face masks are to be worn as you arrive, and when appropriate during worship service.
  • Children under 2 years of age and infants are not to wear face masks.
  • Church will have face masks available for those who need them.

3. Handwashing

  • Indoor restrooms are supplied with soap and sanitizer.
  • Sanitizer is available at outdoor worship area.

FACILITIES

Pleasant Hill Christian School
   
1782 Pleasant Hill Rd., Sebastopol.

  • Blacktop area in rear of school for worship service.
  • Bathrooms open, cleaned and disinfected before services.
  • Seating is provided, or you may bring a chair with you. (hat and sunscreen advised)

WORSHIP SERVICES

  • 10 AM starting time each Sunday, beginning June 14.
  • Children are to stay with their families.
  • Communion in pre-sealed cups is to be picked up by each one.
  • Offerings are to be placed in trays near podium.
  • Bring your own drinking water.

WHO SHOULD NOT ATTEND

  • Individuals with high-risk or pre-existing health issues.
  • Those exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms: fever, cough, sore throat, 
runny nose, headache, fatigue, breathing difficulty.
  • Anyone exposed to someone diagnosed with COVID-19 in the past two weeks.

Stay in touch with your church family!

Even if we are not fellowshipping together please keep in virtual touch!

 


Sermons Online
Pastor Rick will continue posting a video sermon every Sunday on our church website until we are able to meet together again for worship in our sanctuary. Pray with me that will be soon!
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