Community in the Time of Coronavirus

May 6, 2020 | Written by Natalie McLaughlin, Rebecca Hahn and Sherry Graf

The idea of social distancing and small group community would seem to be in direct conflict with each other. But the community we have at Pulpit Rock is strong and resilient! Here’s how three of our small groups are adapting their small group to life during COVID-19. 

by Natalie McLaughlin

Despite the challenging circumstances of following the COVID19 pandemic restrictions, our small group has made a strong effort at being creative, embracing this unique season of life while praying and waiting for life to return to some in-person normalcy.

We have faithfully met each week on Zoom to check in and spur each other on in our trust and reliance on the Lord, and many of us took intentional efforts to call and pray with each other over the phone every week. Others in our group baked desserts, cooked snacks, gathered family game supplies, drove by each home in our group, and as the English call it, played ‘ding dong ditch’ leaving a sweet blessing on all of our door steps. We have been able to help each other out financially as needs arise and together we even learned a new online game, Kahoot, when we felt the need to change up our small group routine for the week. Two ladies even shared the same birthday during this period of time, so abiding by the social distancing rules, their families met up at a special place and had an outdoor picnic with cake and all.

We are all anxious to be able to hug each other again and talk face to face as a group, but as they say, “When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade”… Our sweet group has truly made some tasty lemonade over the past few weeks that we hope only brings us closer in the long run as we weather this storm together!

by Rebecca Hahn

The Owls (Older Wiser Ladies) Bible Study group has been adapting how we do Bible Study during this time of uncertainty.

Before the coronavirus we would meet twice a month and do Bible study together in one of our homes. During this time of change come on we have gone to doing Bible study over Zoom and have been meeting weekly. This change has helped us to stay connected with one another and to check in with one another each week to see how we’re really doing.

Currently we are studying Sacred Rhythms by Ruth Haley Barton and we have found that it has then beneficial to be studying this book during this time of uncertainty. The book walks us through different aspects of how we can draw closer to God through prayer, physical health, and establishing a time each day to spend in the word or in prayer with God.

Another way that I have try to stay connected with the Bible study group is offering to pick up groceries, dropping off homemade baked goods or even setting up times that we can meet in a parking lot so that we can see each other, but still keep our distance.

We’re finding that it’s the little things that are a blessing to one another.

by Sherry Graf

With the stay-at-home orders, we need community more than ever. Staying connected with our small group offers a little slice of normalcy in a time that feels anything but normal.

We meet online at our regular time during the second service for an hour to discuss life, parenting and the sermon. If someone preaches on something more controversial it really makes for a lively discussion.

This past week we started off with a game of Psych to mix things up and the competition was fierce with a prize on the line.

It is so good to keep sharing life together. One week someone mentioned a dishwasher dying, in a house with two working parents and 5 kids this is not good! Another family had an extra sitting in their garage from some recent renos and a few hours later we got a group text pic of it all installed in it’s new home!

The women keep a group text going and we learn new things about each other all the time – like someone’s love of costumes, another’s honeymoon in Paris 20 years ago, a big decision on choosing a high school or difficult job changes. One is a doctor and I like knowing what days she is working so we can pray for the little things that are really big, like for her baby to take a bottle! Sometimes I’ll send out something from scripture that encouraged me or just a general, “How can we pray for each other today?”

I’m so glad we have figured out ways to keep growing closer together despite the new challenges that could easily keep us apart. And we pray 3 John 14, “I hope to see you soon, and we will talk face to face” – even if it is face-mask to face-mask.

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