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OUTDOOR CHURCH RESUMING THIS SUNDAY!

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 12, 2020

Occidental Community Church family,

1 Corinthians 1:27. "God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong.  28. He chose the lowly things of this world and the things that are not to nullify the things that are,  29.so that no one may boast before Him."

It is becoming increasingly obvious today that if you are a Chistian who believes in the Bible as the infallible Word of God, you are a target of much of the mainstream media in our society.  You will be labeled as a bigot, narrow-minded, mean-spirited, and compassionless.  You will be regarded with suspicion in the public arena, because it is assumed that you are so fanatical about your faith that you are incapable of thinking rationally and objectively.  And for some there is nothing more contemptible than a born-again, Bible-believing Christian.  

But this is nothing new or original.  Even in the Apostle Paul's day he exclaimed in 1 Corinthians 4:13. "Up to his moment we have become the scum of the earth, the garbage of the world."  Public opinion in Paul's time was no more charitable toward Christians than it is in ours . . . in fact, much less charitable.  They were not only excoriated wherever they existed, they were imprisoned and even executed.

Have you heard of the church in Denver, Colorado, which actually calls itself Scum of the Earth Church?  It has been around since 2000 and has the following purpose statement on its website:
It doesn't sound like a church name . . . on purpose.  We really want to connect with people who have no interest in "church" by society's definition.  There are plenty of churches for "normal people," and we think we have a unique calling to reach out to our otherwise unreached friends.  Our name is integral to that process.  Whether outcast by society (e.g. punks, skaters, ravers, homeless people  . . .) or by church itself, many who come identify with the name "scum of the earth" since they have been previously treated as such.

Founding pastor Mike Sares explained, "The name resulted from the people we were reaching.  We asked them to choose a name.  Someone suggested Scum of the Earth.  I asked everyone to pray about it for a week.  In the interim I called some mentors who told me not to do it.  Next week we voted, and Scum won.  And I'm glad we did it."

Whether it's a more traditional church such as ours or a church for the outcasts like Scum of the Earth, if you belong to a church that exalts Jesus Christ as the Savior and Lord of the world, you are regarded as an object of scorn, someone to be dismissed and swept away.

Can God do anything with scum?  Let me relate to you an interesting true story.  A man named Frederick Walton was cleaning out his basement in1855 when he found an old can of paint without a lid on it.  Because of its long exposure to the air the paint had formed a thick, rubbery-like scum on top.  We've all found old paint like this in the garage at one time or another.  Walton wondered to himself if anything useful could be made from this scum, and he began to experiment.  He mixed together some of the paint with ground cork and spread it evenly on a piece of canvas.  When it dried he had a tough yet flexible product that seemed perfectly suited as a floor covering.  He decided to patent his discovery and named it after the Latin words for "flax" and "oil."  We know it today as "linoleum."   From a useless paint scum, Frederick Walton had manufactured one of the most durable and inexpensive floor coverings ever known to man.

The world might regard us as "scum," but God has taken us and adopted us into His kingdom, a kingdom that will endure long after this world has perished.  Yes, God can do very much indeed with scum!

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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