ODESSA, Texas (Big 2/Fox 24) — Friday, April 10th was Good Friday, a day many Christians around the world commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. With the Easter weekend ahead, pastors and their congregations are keeping faith and staying united despite the coronavirus outbreak.
“I would encourage you to cling to the reality that we’re going to get through this,” said Executive Pastor, Kenny Comstock, with Crossroads Church. “At some point, this will be in our past, and the question for us might be, ‘What are we going to be like when this is over?'”
During times of turmoil, many people of faith turn to religion. Local pasters like, Comstock, want their congregation to know this quaratine could do more good than harm.
“I also wonder if, sometimes, the things we ask God to remove from our lives are the things he’s trying to use to intrinsically shape us and make us different,” explained Comstock. “So for those who are followers of Christ that maybe are home or isolated, I would challenge you to take a moment and just see what God may have for you in this season.”
Associate Minister of Stonegate Fellowship Church, Randy Unruh, says these times may require us to redefine what is “normal,” and find meaning in other options.
All the things we’ve been depending on, are kind of going out the window. Now, we have to depend on something bigger than us. So I think he’s using us in a really real way,” said Unruh.
Pastors say their churches are forced to keep up with the times more than ever. Social media presence has skyrocketed in the last few weeks, and leaders are thinking outside the box daily.
“Opportunities we have to do things through phones and computers and tablets has changed the way we can do ministry. But, it’s also changed our thoughts on how we can do ministry,” said Unruh.
Some churches hosting virtual egg hunts while others are volunteering to make donation boxes for the needy. Unruh says Stonegate Fellowship even spent two days passing out communion elements ahead of its Good Friday Service.
“What we’re seeing as a church is that we have more people watching online than sometimes attending,” explained Senior Pastor, Matt Wilson, of Antioch Christian Church.
While these times of uncertainty may be lonely, and at times scary, church leaders encourage you to stay proactive in serching for peace.
“Not just with religion, not just going to church, but have faith in that relationship with a God that understands, knows, and loves who we are. That is. I think, vital for us to continue to grow and to continue to move forward and not be bogged down on all this stuff that is going on in our world today.”