UPDATE AS OF Monday, March 30th.
At this time, we are canceling ALL CHURCH ACTIVITIES through April 12th.
Amidst concerns surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19), we want to let you know how Southside is responding.
Our Staff is carefully and continually monitoring this situation. As information evolves, church-wide emails, our website, and Facebook are our primary communication channels for receiving updates. We are committed to doing everything we can to provide a safe environment for our church family and surrounding community.
WILL SOUTHSIDE BE OPEN ON WEEKDAYS?
Yes. At this time, the offices are open as usual.
We may decide to close on certain days for deep cleaning, but we will include that information on this page as needed.
Certain ministries in the church may decide to cancel their meetings for various reasons. For more information on individual ministries and/or meetings, contact your ministry leader.
SHOULD PEOPLE COME TO SOUTHSIDE IF THEY ARE FEELING SICK?
We always want you to feel welcome to come to church, and we value worshiping together. However, in general we would say if you’re feeling sick or running a fever, the best way that you can take care of yourself and love your neighbor is by staying home!
If you need to stay home instead of coming to our worship gathering, we encourage you to listen to the sermon at https://www.oursbc.org/sermon-series .
WHAT PRECAUTIONS CAN PEOPLE TAKE WHEN THEY COME TO SOUTHSIDE OR WHEN AT HOME?
Even from the time of the Moses, God has shown us sanitary practices. So we continue to encourage these age old practices:
- Washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
- Using hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available
- Not touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoiding close contact with people who are sick
- Staying home if you or a family member are sick
- Covering your cough or sneeze
- Disinfecting objects and surfaces regularly
WHAT PRECAUTIONS ARE WE TAKING TO MAKE OUR GATHERINGS AS SAFE AS POSSIBLE?
- Wiping down all common area touchpoints (e.g., doors, light switches, countertops, etc.)
- Placing hand sanitizers in common areas throughout the buildings.
- We will be canceling our greeting time during the worship services, but we still encourage everyone to be welcoming and consider creative interactions –like a fist or elbow bump instead of hand shaking!
- We will postpone passing our offering plates during the worship services, but we do encourage everyone to consider giving online https://www.elexiogiving.com/App/Giving/sout5502268 or gifts can be dropped in the offering plates after service, dropped by the front office, or mailed.
- Performing additional in-depth cleaning of our facilities on a regular basis.
- All of our Preschool, Children, and Student areas, including various surfaces/objects/toys used by our children, will be sanitized on a regular basis.
We will continue to follow standard health protocols:
- Not admitting a child with an elevated temperature (above 99.6 F). A child MUST be fever free without medications for 24 hours before coming to any of our ministry activities/events/meetings.
- Please help us by closely monitoring your children for any symptoms and being understanding if we feel we cannot accept your kids into our programs due to health concerns.
WHAT ABOUT SOUTHSIDE MISSION TRIPS?
We are encouraging individuals involved in trips to prayerfully consider any decision to travel through consultation with medical professionals.
As of right now we are still going on mission trips. There is always an inherent risk in any kind of travel whether stateside or abroad. Should the situation arise where we need to cancel or postpone, we will update everyone through our main communication channels.
HOW CAN I BETTER UNDERSTAND THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)?
Coronavirus is a type of virus that causes respiratory illness — an infection of the airways and lungs. COVID-19 is a new strain of coronavirus. It is part of the same family of coronaviruses that includes the common cold. This coronavirus outbreak was first identified in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. Since then, the virus has spread to other countries.
The most common early symptoms appear between 2 and 14 days after infection. Symptoms can be mild to severe. They include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like high blood pressure, heart problems or diabetes, are more likely to develop serious illness. People with fever, cough and difficulty breathing should seek medical attention. Most people recover from the disease without needing special treatment.
Like many other viruses, the coronavirus (COVID-19) seems to spread from person-to-person through a cough, sneeze, or kiss. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that the risk in the U.S. is still low. They will update this status regularly on their website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.
You can also find more information from the World Health Organization and the Georgia Department of Health.
HOW SHOULD I RESPOND SPIRITUALLY TO THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)?
The coronavirus (COVID-19) is yet one more reminder that we live in a fallen world of sickness, sin, suffering, and death. Ultimately, none of us are immune to any of these things. But that’s why the gospel is such good news. God has not left us alone in this imperfect world, but he has come to us in the perfect person of Jesus Christ.
Times like these remind us all of the fragility of life and the inevitability of death. So, let’s spread the greatest news that death has been defeated and eternal life is available to all who trust in Jesus.
Here are additional ways we encourage responding to the coronavirus:
- Be sensitive to opportunities to love and care for others, whether they are sick, isolated, marginalized, poor, or oppressed.
- Even if we are unable to gather at certain times or if you feel unsafe to attend, please stay closely connected to the church family through personal meetings or social media.
- Continue to faithfully give financial offerings online or by mail so that the ministry of the church continues.
- Pray for God’s mercy on the sick, strength for doctors, insight for researchers, and wisdom for officials.
Southside Baptist Staff
This coronavirus update was modified from McClean Bible Church.