HEALTH SAFETY

AT PORTLAND CHRISTIAN CENTER

UPDATE: May 28, 4:00 PM

Dear Portland Christian Center Family,

The longer the Coronavirus restrictions last, the more interested and eager we become for the reopening of our lives—our homes, shops, jobs, and church. Many of you have asked me, “When are we going to reopen PCC?” Some have asked, “Why have we not already reopened our church?” And a few have even suggested that we should not let our Governor dictate whether our building is open or not.

I want to let you know that our Senior Leadership Team and Pastoral staff is actively planning for the day that our church family can regather in our building. Of course, there are many factors involved in this decision—some imposed by the state-directed phases and protocols for safely reopening (which are rapidly evolving and ever-changing), and some as a result of our pastoral heart to keep you healthy when we do come back together.

I reassure you that our team is working on it. However, I cannot give you a date that is certain at this time for re-opening our building. In light of that, as your Pastor, I appeal to you for your continued prayers for wisdom, your trust that when decisions are made, we have done them with the best interests of the body of Christ in mind and, I ask for your patience.

And as you await our reopening, I strongly suggest the attitude with which you wait is of critical importance to your Christian witness, to the witness of Portland Christian Center, and the witness of the Body of Christ in Portland. Below is the text of a document that I and dozens of other Pastors in the Greater Portland area have crafted that explains the spiritual posture that our individual churches will take toward the process of reopening. Our Board of Deacons has unanimously approved it for PCC. And now, I trust that you will read and absorb it, and more importantly, live it out in your attitudes and actions as a witness of Jesus in our city.

In Christ,

Pastor Ray Noah


A PASTORAL STATEMENT ON THE REOPENING OF THE CHURCH

As a coalition of Church Leaders in Portland, we feel compelled to stand together in our response to how and when we reopen our Sunday worship gatherings in light of the Governor’s phased rollout plan.

We believe that the body of Christ is called to be both a faithful presence and prophetic witness to our cities. We stand on the reality that the people of Jesus have worshipped historically and globally under every and all circumstances, threats, wars, and even persecution. Following our rich Christian history we are able to take any form to express our worship of Jesus Christ, from filling stadiums to gatherings of 2-3 people. Jesus has promised to be among us. In this moment, the churches of Portland continue to gather on Sundays in homes and through technology. We look forward to gathering again in person, and yet, we are seeing God work in incredible ways as he draws His people into places of dependence, healing, repentance, lament, and comfort.

We stand together as pastors in our commitment to innovate and sacrifice so that we can faithfully lead our congregations in worship, and serve vulnerable populations as well as our neighbors. We have agreed to work together so that every person remains safe, the vulnerable populations of our churches and neighborhoods are cared for, and to be good citizens as the scripture calls us to be.

We appreciate the complexity and unprecedented challenges our elected officials are facing. We desire that whatever plans are put forth by the Governor will take into account both the the threat of COVID-19, and the social and economic implications of a prolonged stay at home orders. We are committed to continuing to worship in new ways and serve our city courageously and generously while employing the safety protocols recommended by the CDC.

We choose to comply with the Governor’s phases at this time, and will together seek ways to learn from one another, innovate together, and be a collective witness of God’s love and salvation during such a challenging moment for our entire world.

We will continue to pray for our state and local leaders, for their health, safety, wisdom, and perseverance. We appreciate the countless hours they have worked. We pray that the flourishing of Oregonians will be valued over party politics and personal power by both the state and the church.

We together applaud our front line workers who carry the burden of this moment in ways few of us can imagine. We grieve with those who have lost loved ones during this season. We pray for those who have lost jobs and businesses, and all those who have suffered financially in this time. We pray for our houseless neighbors, those with food insecurity, those who are home but not safe, and all others who are dramatically negatively affected by this moment. Our desire is that you will find the churches of the greater Portland area to be good neighbors who love and care for the flourishing of our cities, families, and communities.

We stand together for the strength of the church and the health of our cities.

Abundant Life Church
Aloha Faith Center
Anthem Church
Antioch Church (Bend)
As Is Church
Beaverton Christian Church
Beaverton Foursquare Church
Bethel Presbyterian Church
The Bridge Church NW
Bridgeport Church
Bridgetown Church
C3 Church – Northeast Portland
Calvary Chapel
Calvary Chapel Community Church
Calvary Church (Sisters)
Canby Alliance Church
Cedar Mill Bible Church
Christ the King Community Church
Colossae Church
Countryside Fellowship (Eugene)
Door of Hope
East Hill Church Family
Grace Chapel
Greater Portland Bible Church
Hinson Baptist Church
Hood River Alliance Church
Hope City Church
Imago Dei Central
Imago Dei Eastside
Lampstand House Church Network
Life Change Church
Mannahouse
Maranatha Church
Missio Community
Mosaic
Mt. Olivet Baptist Church
New Hope
New Hope Foursquare Church
Park Place Church
Portland Christian Center
Rise City Church
River West Church
Riversgate Church
Rolling Hills Community
The Rose Church
Sojourn Church
St. John’s Christian Church
St. Johns Wesleyan Church
Storyline Community PDX
Sunset Presbyterian Church
Village Church
The Well Community Church
Westside A Jesus Church
Westside Church (Bend)
Westside Community Church
Willamette Christian Church

UPDATE: May 23, 7:30 AM

 

Dear Portland Christian Center Family,

As you may know by now, President Trump declared yesterday (5/22/2020) that churches and other houses of worship are essential. You can read his declaration on any number of news sites, or watch it here: https://youtu.be/1jPP8IeOJj8.

We applaud his words: church gatherings are essential to the spiritual health of millions of Americans, and I would add, to America as a whole. We look forward to the day where all houses of worship are open, and we pray, are fuller than before the Coronavirus restrictions were implemented.

This development has led many of you to ask if Portland Christian Center will be open for in-person worship this Sunday, May 24. We will not. Others are wondering if this means the church building will be open for services in the next week or two. Frankly, we don’t know. When we do return, you can expect direct communication from PCC leadership with as much notice in advance as possible.

When we do return to meeting in person, our leadership team—pastoral staff, Board of Deacons, and PCC medical professionals—will do its best to provide a safe experience. Therefore, prudence requires us to wait until the Center For Disease Control (CDC) and the Multnomah County Health Department issue guidelines for safe gatherings. Once that happens, our “re-open team” will review the guidelines and implement procedures for PCC to resume in person gatherings—either for groups and/or for worship services.

We ask for your continued prayer in this matter. Again, your safety is our highest priority. Likewise, we desire our re-opening to leave a compelling witness of credible Christianity to a city that is watching how we respond to this current crisis. Our church leadership needs wisdom from above to know when re-opening is feasible due to all of the restrictions that we expect to be placed upon churches—social distancing, masks, crowd size, etc.

You can expect a follow-up email from me by the middle of next week with any updates we may have, and perhaps more importantly, the posture that our church, in unity with the Church of Portland, will take in the re-opening process.

For now, I look forward to gathering with you through technology tomorrow at 9:00 AM, 10:30 AM or 5:00 PM at https://live.pcctoday.com. Our worship will be anointed and God has given me a special word on a very important practice that will fill us with transformational hope.

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Ray Noah

 

Sunday Gatherings

In cooperation with our government and health leaders, as well as making your safety top priority, we will livestream worship, prayer, giving and God’s word this Sunday at 10:30 AM.

Giving

Many of you already give online and can continue to do so. For those who have not participated in online giving, click the Give Online button and follow the steps.

UPDATE: March 25, 5:45 PM

Dear Portland Christian Center Family,

“This is the day the Lord has made, so let us rejoice and be glad in it!” (Psalm 118:24)

I trust that you are well during this crazy COVID-19 season. And I want to remind you that God’s got this—and you, too!

Oregon Governor Kate Brown has issued a “Stay at Home” directive, so I need to let you know that your ministry team at Portland Christian Center is complying with the order. We are working from home. There is a skeleton crew at the church, which her directive permits, so we are keeping the phones open, responding to Pastor on-call needs, and allowing our counseling office to stay operational — all the while practicing safe distancing and extreme sanitization measures.

If you need anything, please let us know. If you need help or just want someone to listen, you can email us or call the church office at 503-245-7735. Our pastors are standing by!

Our staff will continue advancing the mission of our church — to know God and make him known. Through the various departments, we are having daily all-staff meetings and ministry team meetings through tele-conferencing, and each staff member will be making phone calls to every person who is on our active church rolls—that’s nearly 2,000 calls. So be expecting a call from us simply to see how you are doing.

And, don’t forget to join us through our Livestream service this Sunday at 10:30 AM. The preferred way to watch is by logging on through our webpage, https://live.pcctoday.com. This allows you to interact with us. 

Invite a friend too! The unchurched are more open to “going” to church, even if it is an online service than ever before.

During our gathering times, you can chat with us directly through the streaming experience and we will be monitoring the phones as well. If you miss us at 10:30 AM, we will post the online service to our website.

Hope to “see” you this Sunday. And don’t forget: God’s got this—and you, too!

You are loved,

Pastor Ray Noah

UPDATE: March 12, 3:10 PM

Dear Portland Christian Center Family,

As you have likely heard by now, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown issued a statement Wednesday night that prohibits public gatherings of 250+, including faith-based gatherings, for the next four weeks in order to stem the tide of the COVID-19 outbreak. Our pastoral team has been anticipating this, so we are now shifting from planning to implementation.

It is our feeling that we need to make cooperation with our government and health leaders (Romans 13:1) as well as the safety of you, the PCC spiritual community, our top priority. In light of that, over the next few Sundays, we will shift how we “meet together” (Hebrews 10:24-25) from gathering as the church in our building to bringing church to you through Livestream. For this coming Sunday, we have rescheduled both morning and evening missions events to late September.

I invite you to tune in this Sunday at 10:30 AM as we worship, pray, give and listen to God speak through His Word. In fact, I believe that God has given me a specific word that will put the COVID-19 outbreak and our response to it into a Biblical context.  Please join me for “Pandemic Panic and the People of God” this coming Sunday at 10:30 AM via livestream at https://pcctoday.com/live.

We will also suspend our midweek on-campus group gathering during this time, but our fantastic pastoral staff will be communicating a variety of ways that the groups they lead will be able to engage in discipleship.

In the meantime, our offices will remain open, and we look forward to serving you in this unique time. Please let us know any needs you have, and we will respond as best we can.

While this pandemic has put a road block in our normal routines, I have no doubt that God will enable us to leverage it as a building block for His glory and the growth of His Kingdom here in Portland.

Pastor Ray Noah

UPDATE: March 1, 7:27 AM

Dear Portland Christian Family,

One of my intercessors sent an email today that began with these relevant words from Isaiah 49:11, “I will make all my mountains a way.” That word from the Lord was then followed by a statement that should give us all comfort and confidence in the uncertain times we find ourselves in from time to time:

“God will make obstacles serve His purpose.”

As I thought about the world-wide threat of the Coronavirus that is now at our doorstep here in Portland, and how that might affect our church family, this verse reminded me that not only is our God sovereign—that is, he is in total control—but that he leverages all things for his glory and for our good. And that would include this mysterious virus, regardless of whether it peters out or reaches pandemic levels over the next few weeks.

So with that in mind, as the Coronavirus continues to dominate news cycles, water-cooler conversations and perhaps even world economies, and as it begins to impact our personal lives, let us not give into a spirit of fear. Rather, let us choose to look at this present challenge through eyes of faith. Furthermore, let us prayerfully consider how God might want to use us in these fearful times to point people to the One who is sovereign over all—even the Coronavirus.

Now having said, that, we must also consider some practical, common sense ways that we can do our part to promote healthy living, and how we can safely gather in our regular times of public worship at Portland Christian Center. So here are some things that we are doing as a leadership team, and some things we will ask you to do as we navigate this potential health crisis.

 

WHAT CHURCH LEADERSHIP IS DOING:

First, we have commissioned a team of medical professionals from our congregation that are discussing this issue, and they have been tasked to make recommendations for how we should manage our church gatherings. Stay tuned for updates, which we will make available a they come in.

Second, we have installed hand sanitizing stations throughout the church, and we ask you to make use of them as you come into and as you leave your church activities.

Third, should this become an outbreak that requires us to suspend our public gatherings, we are fully prepared to offer our services through the livestream (pcctoday.com/live). We will even work to offer children’s and youth discipleship ministry through the livestream.

Fourth, our pastors and deacons are actively praying for you, for our church family, and for our community. We are asking God to put a protective hedge around you and your family that will keep you from illness, accident or injury. And we are likewise praying for physical healing for those become ill with any kind of sickness or disease. Please let us know if you need our prayers for healing, for should you be unable to attend church to be prayed for, we will come to you and offer anointing prayer for your healing.

 

WHAT WE ARE ASKING YOU TO DO:

First, please use the hand sanitizing stations when you enter and exit the building.

Second, observe the normal health precautions that you should do at all times, and particularly in a flu season.

Third, keep aware of the health precautions that have been issued by health officials. If you are wondering where to look, check out these websites:

Fourth, if you are ill, we would ask that you stay home from our public gatherings so as not to infect others. But please let us know, because even though you cannot come to church, the church will come to you. That is, our pastoral staff will be happy to connect with you for healing prayer.

Finally, trust in the Lord with all your heart. He’s got this, and he’s got you.

And don’t forget, God loves you — and so do I!

Pastor Ray Noah