Local churches adjust to social distancing

Thursday, March 26, 2020
A sign at First Christian Church in Sikeston shows the building is closed. Churches are adapting to the new “social distancing” guidlines that began in Missouri Monday.
David Jenkins/Standard Democrat

SIKESTON — With a ‘social distancing’ order beginning in Missouri on Monday, many area churches are continuing to adapt.

In many cases, churches are increasing the use of the internet, whether through Facebook Live videos or YouTube.

Last Sunday, Tanner Street Church of God offered their service online via Facebook and it was “well received and widely viewed,” said Rev. Dr. Georg Karl, interim pastor at Tanner Street. “It was a 30 minute worship service. The brevity was intentional for people who don’t give their attention to an online presentation for much more than that.”

The church is looking at having a drive-in church as soon as Missouri Gov. Mike Parson lifts the 10-person gathering limit.

“We want to do the Drive In Church now but we are committed to being a part of the solution to the COVID-19 crisis,” Karl said. “Since we cannot be sure that people won’t be tempted to get out of their cars to connect with other people, we are waiting one week before gathering people for worship on site in any form.”

The church will again broadcast the service online at 10:40 a.m. Sunday as will many other local churches, including First Baptist Church in Sikeston at 10:30 a.m., Cape First in Sikeston at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m., Miner Baptist Church at 9 a.m., First United Methodist Church in Sikeston with their Traditions service at 9 a.m., First Kids at 10:15 a.m. and Journey at 11 a.m., Concordia Lutheran in Sikeston at 10:30 a.m.

Instead of a service last Sunday, Fellowship Baptist Church fed seniors and family in the community, sending out over 440 meals either by delivery or drive thru.

“We had many good reports from our delivery teams about how this touched people in the community and church,” said pastor Bob Houchins.

This week, Fellowship Baptist Church will show their Sunday service online while Anchor Church in Sikeston will stream their service at 10 a.m. on their Facebook page as will Grace Bible Fellowship at 10:45 a.m.

St. Francis Xavier in Sikeston will live stream their Sunday Mass at 8:30 a.m. Sunday and daily Masses at 8 a.m. on their Facebook page. Sunday Mass at Immaculate Conception in New Madrid will also be live streamed at 9 a.m. on their Facebook page.

The Bridge Worship Service will hold a drive-in service Sunday at 10:45 a.m. at North Acres Baptist Church, 202 Kennedy Drive in Sikeston.

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