As the coronavirus spreads in the U.S., congregations are facing a situation many have never considered.
In response, the LifeWay leadership team has developed pandemic response resources that are being made available for free to assist pastors and church leaders at MinistryGrid.com/coronavirus.
"Pastors are asking questions about how their churches should react to the coronavirus," said Todd Adkins, director of leadership at LifeWay. "We wanted to provide them with training videos and checklists that are immediately applicable for their congregations."
Adkins maintains churches should have a response plan that can be implemented for more rare instances like the coronavirus, but also situations like a severe, local outbreak of the flu.
"When you have a response plan in place, you can effectively communicate and serve your church during a pandemic," said Adkins. "Doing so shows preparedness, not panic."
The free training course "How to Prepare for the Coronavirus at Your Church" walks leaders through developing a plan, phases of implementation, attendance metrics that should be monitored, how to alter regular ministry practices and more.
The available documents include a sample pandemic response policy, suggestions from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and checklists for guest services and kids ministry.
"Responses should be contextualized to individual churches and their communities," said Adkins. "These resources should serve as guidelines for churches to develop based on their own specific situations."
In light of this, Adkins said churches should start by forming a task force consisting of church staff, key ministry leaders, as well as licensed safety and medical personnel, such as police officers, first responders and nurses.
The task force should be responsible for monitoring local conditions using information from local and state health departments, the CDC and FEMA to determine the severity in your area, he said.
In developing a response, Adkins said "any ministry that interacts with multiple people on a given Sunday should have specific response tasks as part of the plan."
To access the sample response plan and other free pandemic resources, church leaders need to log in or create a free LifeWay account at MinistryGrid.com.
Once logged in, participants can view four specific videos: "How to Create a Pandemic Response Plan for Your Church," "Three Phases of a Pandemic Response Plan," "Your Church's Leadership Pipeline in a Pandemic Response Plan" and "Pandemic Planning Considerations."
In addition to practical checklists and other downloadable documents, the course also contains links to applicable CDC guidelines.
Church leaders can find more information on the free training resources at MinistryGrid.com/coronavirus.
Aaron Earls is a writer for LifeWay Christian Resources.
Get Spirit-filled content delivered right to your inbox! Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.
Help Charisma stay strong for years to come as we report on life in the Spirit. Become an integral part of Charisma’s work by joining Charisma Media Partners. Click here to keep us strong!
Dr. Mark Rutland's
National Institute of Christian Leadership (NICL)
The NICL is one of the top leadership training programs in the U.S. taught by Dr. Mark Rutland. If you're the type of leader that likes to have total control over every aspect of your ministry and your future success, the NICL is right for you!
FREE NICL MINI-COURSE - Enroll for 3-hours of training from Dr. Rutland's full leadership course. Experience the NICL and decide if this training is right for you and your team.Do you feel stuck? Do you feel like you’re not growing? Do you need help from an expert in leadership? There is no other leadership training like the NICL. Gain the leadership skills and confidence you need to lead your church, business or ministry. Get ready to accomplish all of your God-given dreams. CLICK HERE for NICL training dates and details.
The NICL Online is an option for any leader with time or schedule constraints. It's also for leaders who want to expedite their training to receive advanced standing for Master Level credit hours. Work through Dr. Rutland's full training from the comfort of your home or ministry at your pace. Learn more about NICL Online. Learn more about NICL Online.