Update: March 27, 2020 (4PM)

It’s hard to believe how fast our world has changed over the last week. These are certainly unprecedented times for all of us. Our hope and prayer is during this time, despite all the noise and chaos around us, that you continue to trust in these words from God: “Surrender your anxiety! Be silent and stop your striving and you will see that I am God. I am the God above all the nations,and I will be exalted throughout the whole earth” (Psalm 46:10). May these words give you great comfort as you continue to adjust to new daily rhythms.

Here are some important updates about North River to keep you connected this week:

Good Friday & Easter Online: The Staff and Overseers made the decision this week to focus on providing the best Good Friday and Easter online experience possible. We believe this decision is vital in our role in helping and serving our neighbor by slowing the spread of the virus, AND is a tremendous outreach opportunity to invite people to experience Easter at North River from the safety of their own home. Who is your One? Who will you invite to Easter at North River?

Worship Services Online: Please join us online this Sunday for worship. Services will be at 9 AM & 11 AM. You can connect to our services by going directly to the home page of our website: www.northriverchurch.org. You will have an opportunity to view the service, as well as interact with the staff through comments, questions, and prayer requests.

Care Calls: This week the Care Call Team began calling over 860 people who are part of North River.  As we navigate through this unprecedented time, we are committed to finding ways to help remain connected together.

Deacons Fund: If you need financial assistance, please contact the Deacons here. They may be able to assist you through our Deacons Fund. If you would like to contribute to the Deacons Fund to help others during this time, please select the Deacons fund in our giving app, or contact the Finance Team here, and they can assist you.

Caring Connection: If you are sick, elderly or disabled, and need help with some errands (i.e. picking up groceries, prescriptions, etc.) please contact our Caring Connection Ministry here. We have a team of people ready to assist.

Prayer: If you would like to have someone pray with you, please contact our Deacons Team here.

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For Children, Students & Adults

Children’s Ministry Online: Amy and her team have been working this week to provide fun and creative activities for children and families. There are also daily devotionals, and updates as well. If you are a parent and are not receiving Amy’s daily update, please contact Amy here, and she will be happy to add you to the list. Check out our Facebook Page to see Children’s Ministry updates.

Student Ministries Online: Kristie and Rich are providing many ways for students to stay connected. Every Tuesday students can join an online “hangout” to spend some time together. 7PM for Middle School and 8PM for High School. Students can also join us for Elevate Online again this Sunday at 6:00 PM. Students and parents will receive a link in their e-mails for these online meeting times. Please contact Kristie here for more information. Check out the Elevate social media channels for more updates, devotions, and activities throughout the week. Facebook Middle School Parents, Facebook High School Parents, Elevate Instagram.

Small Groups Online: All of our Small Groups have moved online and are meeting together for study, prayer, and connection. Small Groups online is an opportunity to increase care for each other. Several of our Small Groups are following our “Journey With Jesus” Sermon Series. If you are not connected to a Small Group, now is a great opportunity to do so. Please click here to sign up for a Small Group today!

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Here are some important resources for you:

Zoom Meeting Rooms: Please contact Sue Crossman here if your group or ministry needs an online meeting room. We have three Zoom Meeting Rooms available.

Give Online: We have moved our giving online. You can give through our app (myNorthriver), or Text northrivercc to 77977 and follow the prompts. You can also give through your myNorthRiver profile or your online billpay.

MyNorthRiver:  MyNorthRiver is our online communication database.  MyNorthRiver helps you to remain connected with a MyNorthRiver profile, and connects you to the ministries that you are involved in.  If you have a moment, please update your profile:

1.   If you already have a MyNorthRiver account (CCB), please sign in to your account here and update your own contact information.

2. If you do not have a MYNorthRiver account (CCB), please contact Sue Crossman here and she will set you up with an account so you can update your own contact information.

We are here for you.  We are praying for you.  We love you.

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Update March 20, 2020 4PM

We hope you have remained safe and healthy this week.  Despite the obstacle of closing down the building, the staff has been hard at work moving as many of our services, groups, and ministries online.  The church is people, not a building. We have quickly learned to adapt and learn new strategies for how we help North River Church (that’s you!) remain connected to God, and connected to each other during this unprecedented time.

Here are some of the ways to connect at North River:

Worship Services Online:  Please join us online this Sunday for worship.  Services will be at 9AM & 11AM. You can connect to our services by going directly to the home page of our website: www.northriverchurch.org.  You will have an opportunity to view the service, as well as interact with the staff through comments, questions, and prayer requests.  Who is your One? Who will you invite to check out North River Online this Sunday?

Children’s Ministry Online:  Amy and her team have been working this week to provide fun and creative activities for children and families.  There are also daily devotionals, and updates as well. If you are a parent, and are not receiving Amy’s daily update, please contact Amy here, and she will be happy to add you to the list.  Check out our Facebook Page to see Children’s Ministry updates.

Student Ministries Online:  Kristie and Rich are providing daily devotionals, weekly online hangout meetings for students, and will also be hosting Elevate Online this Sunday at 6:00PM. Your son or daughter’s Small Group leader will also be reaching out to them soon if they have provided their contact info to them. Please contact Kristie here for more information.  Check out the Elevate social media channels for updates.  Facebook Middle School Parents, Facebook High School Parents, Elevate Instagram.

Small Groups Online:  Most of our Small Groups have moved online and are already meeting together for study, prayer and connection.  Small Groups online is an opportunity to increase care for each other.  Several of our Small Groups are following our “Journey With Jesus” Sermon Series.  If you are not connected to a Small Group, now is a great opportunity to do so. Please click here to sign up for a Small Group today!

Care Calling:  Beginning next week we’ll be making Care Calls to everyone at North River Church.  Our plan is to make sure no one falls through the cracks during this time. To help ensure that you get a call, please help us with the following:

  1.  If you already have a MyNorthRiver account (CCB), please sign in to your account here and update your own contact information.

  2. If you do not have a MYNorthRiver account (CCB), please contact Sue Crossman here and she will set you up with an account so you can update your own contact information.

  3. If you would like to help with making phone calls, we would love your help!  Please email Pastor Paul here and let him know you want to help.

Here are some important resources for you as we move North River online:

Zoom Meeting Rooms: Please contact Sue Crossman here if your group or ministry needs an online meeting room.  We have two Zoom Meeting Rooms available.

Prayer:  If you would like to have someone pray with you, please contact our Deacons Team, Deb Clapp here.

Help:  If you are sick, elderly or disabled, and need help with some errands (i.e. picking up groceries, prescriptions, etc.) please contact our Caring Connection Ministry here.

Give Online:  We have moved our giving online.  You can give through our app (myNorthriver), or Text northrivercc to 77977 and follow the prompts.  You can also give through your myNorthRiver profile, or through your own online billpay.

We love you.  We are praying for you.  We trust in the hope we have that God is at work in this crisis, and through this crisis.  Be mindful of the words of Paul to the church in Rome, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” (Romans 12:12).

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Update March 16, 2020 7PM

We continue to navigate and address all of the challenges, changes, and ordinances to help limit the spread of the Coronavirus. We also continue to remain faithful in the hope and promises we have in God. We are trusting the words of the Apostle Paul, that in all things (and in this crisis in particular), God is working for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28).

In light of the latest developments, and our continued support of decisions by our state and federal officials, there are two short-term changes to our ministry that you need to know:

Sunday Worship Services: We will not physically meet this Sunday for Worship.  We will be providing an online,
pre-recorded service you will have access to at our regular service times, 9 AM and 11 AM.  We realize that some of you experienced dropped-connection and poor sound issues last week, so this modified approach will rectify those issues. You will be able to view our services either on our website (www.northriverchurch.org/livestream) or on our Facebook Page (https://www.facebook.com/Northrivercc/).

Ministries & Programs: To help avoid the further spread of the virus, and to ensure that we are doing our part in keeping everyone safe and healthy as possible, we will be closing the building to all ministries, groups, and programs beginning today, March 13 until Monday, April 6. No ministries, groups or programs will be able to meet at North River Church during this time. This was not an easy decision, but we feel it is best given the circumstances to ensure safety for our congregation, and maintain alignment with the current recommendations from the state.

We are working to provide online resources and support for groups to continue meeting (Online Meeting Rooms). If you are a Ministry Leader or Small Group Leader, we will be communicating with you directly over the next couple of days about some best options for your group. We want to encourage groups to use the resources provided, or feel free to innovate on your own.

Parents and Families, you will be hearing from our Children’s Ministry and Student Ministries Teams about some creative ideas to promote faith-filled moments at home.

Here are a couple of resources for you:

Right Now Media:  Right Now Media is online Bible Study resources for children, families, and adults.  If you already have an account, you can access Right Now Media here.  If you need an account, please contact Sue Crossman and she will set up an account for you.  You can email Sue here.

Text Updates:  We will be adding Text updates to our communication plan.  If you would like to receive Text Updates, please text the word CONNECT to 781.227.8765.

Please remember our value of Stewardship.  Though we are not physically meeting, our ministry to you and to the South Shore will continue as we develop innovative ways to fulfill our mission.  You can give through our App (myNorthRiver), or Text northrivercc to 77977 and follow the prompts.

As a staff, we are here for you.  If you need prayer, have a specific need, or just want to connect, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.  Though not what we planned, this is a unique opportunity for the church to love, care and support each other, and our neighbors around us.  We are committed to leading the way.

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Update March 15, 2020 (9PM)

By now you have received word of the most recent update from our Governor, Charlie Baker, banning all gatherings over 25 people for the foreseeable future. As Christians, we are called to obey the authority of our government. Therefore, North River Church will suspend Sunday morning services during this time.

The staff is currently working on a plan to provide a worship resource for everyone during this time. You will hear more about these plans later this week.

North River Church will be officially closed tomorrow, March 16. All ministries and programs have been canceled.

Please continue to pray for North River, the region, and the world. This crisis is certainly affecting all of us. Thankfully, our God is greater! We can take comfort in the words from Psalm 46: “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”

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Update March 13, 2020 (5PM)

Here is an update regarding North River Church and our approach to this weekend.

  • We will have services at 9:00 am and 11:00 am this Sunday, March 15th.
  • If you are at risk, sick or feel unsafe, please stay home this Sunday.
  • We are providing a LIVE STREAM link so that you can view North River’s service at home. That link is: northriverchurch.org/livestream
  • Please use your on-line banking or the MyNorthRiver app to give financially.
  • ELEVATE has been canceled for this weekend.

Why will we have services?
We respect the decisions other churches have made to meet or to cancel services. Governor Baker has asked churches to suspend any gatherings larger than 250 people. With the exception of major holidays, we are below the 200 level in each service.

Our Overseers and Staff have prayed and we have considered the options. In the end, we believe that Christians are called to face difficult times with prayer and worship. We wish to avoid the polar extremes of this crisis: we refuse to ignore it and we refuse to panic. So we are planning to worship on Sunday morning – The Lord’s Day.

If the Governor bans all religious services for the next few weeks, we will comply for the sake of respecting authority and for the welfare of others.

What should we expect?

  • For those who choose to worship with us on Sunday, we will have offering buckets available instead of passing the offering bags. On days when we have Communion, we have ordered pre-packaged communion kits to reduce the items we all touch or pass down the rows.
  • Bring your own coffee! We will not be serving coffee or food for the next two Sundays in order to reduce the number of items touched by the hands of others.
  • We will spend some time praying for our church members, for our neighbors, for our nation and its elected officials.

What can we do?

  • Jesus tells us in Mark 5:36, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.” He also tells us in John 16:33, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” So the message from Jesus is to expect trouble, but to avoid being overtaken by fear.
  • In Matthew 22:39 Jesus tells us to “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Find a way to be a blessing to someone else who is struggling during this time.
  • Check our web site for updates: NorthRiverChurch.org/Coronavirus
  • Check our social media channels for updates as well.

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Update March 12, 2020 (10AM)

Like many of you, we have been closely monitoring the news and developments of the Coronavirus. Some of you have been disappointed as trips, classes, and plans have been postponed or canceled. Some of you are nervous about how to stay healthy, and not get infected with the virus. Some of you are rightfully scared, wondering what is going to happen around the world in the days and weeks to come. Thankfully, we have a God who brings us comfort, hope, and peace in times of confusion and uncertainty. Jesus said, “Don’t worry or surrender to your fear. For you’ve believed in God, now trust and believe in me also (John 14:1).” Jesus is greater than our fears, and our future with him gives us eternal hope. While we certainly need to be careful and take appropriate precautions, our greatest remedy during this time is to trust God with our lives and circumstances, and not live in fear.

Here is some important information and updates about our services and ministries at North River:

 

What are we doing to ensure a safe and healthy environment at North River?

We have increased cleaning and disinfecting around the building, including regularly disinfecting all of the door handles.

You will also notice:

  •  Extra Hand Sanitizer pumps around the building.
  •  Lysol wipes/spray/towel stations around the building.
  •  All hard surfaces in the Nursery and Toddler room have been disinfected.
  •  Welcome Center and Food Stations are cleaned before and after each use.


What can I do to help reduce the spread of the Coronavirus?

Please help us by doing your part:

  • Please use discretion and stay home if you are sick.
  • Take extra care when washing hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • During the greeting, we are encouraging everyone to smile, wave and give an “elbow bump” instead of handshaking and/or hugs.

Are you planning to cancel Sunday services?

We are not planning to cancel our services at this time. We will continue to monitor the recommendations of state and local government officials.

Should I stop going to church while the Coronavirus is spreading?

Please use discretion and stay home if you are sick. You can listen to the message online via our website, iTunes or Spotify.


Is the process for collecting the offering going to change?

Instead of passing the collection bags, we will have two ushers with plastic buckets at each exit of the Worship Center at the end of the service. Please put your tithes and offerings into the bucket as you leave. You can also give through our app (myNorthriver), or Text northrivercc to 77977 and follow the prompts.


Will we still have Communion?

We will still have communion and will provide individually packaged bread and juice cups for the foreseeable future.


Are the Summer Mission Trips canceled?

Sadly, the Zambia trip has been canceled. As of now, we are still moving forward with the Peru trip and will continue to monitor developments closely.


Helpful Resource Links

Center For Disease Control

Mass.gov

World Health Organization

We will continue to send out regular communication and updates via email, and will update our website and social media channels.

As always, we are here to serve. If you have questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to ask. If you need assistance, please reach out to one another, or to the staff. It is times like these where the church must be the church and support each other as a community.