Deacons, We Need You!

Deacons, and this includes all those who are doing the diaconal work, you are needed to lead the way in creating a system of response for your church members and community. Here are some things to consider:

  1. Practice your listening skills. Engage your members to check-in remotely (phone, email, etc.) with everyone that is part of your community. Gather information on who may need support.

  2. Create a system for regular check-ins. After the initial contacts, make a plan for who will be following up and how often.

  3. Pay attention to the most vulnerable. You know your community and who is most vulnerable, but here are some to consider:

    1. Elderly

    2. Families who are food-insecure

    3. Single parents

    4. Unemployed

    5. Individuals dealing with anxiety

Create a plan to be in touch with these individuals and families regularly and how you will respond to their needs.

  1. Identify the strengths of your church. Who can deliver groceries, who can pick up medications, who can make meals, who can write notes of encouragement, who can tutor students, who can provide support to a mom? Think of what you might offer to ease someone else’s burden.

  2. Decide on a system for response. Set up a hotline or point person to take intake of emergency needs. 

  3. Identify the financial resources your church will provide. Examine and pray over your budget. Decide if more resources can be allocated for caring for each other. 

  4. Remember the community your church is placed in. Others that don’t come to your church will need your help. Be ready to step in and reach out. See Community During Covid-19

  5. Be sensitive to your attitudes. Continue to be a welcoming community, especially to the most vulnerable. Reject racism and xenophobia, and don’t let comments or attitudes go unchecked.

  6. Be creative. Allow the creative ideas of your members to be used in creating community while practicing social distancing. Get youth involved; they have great ideas.

  7. Stay healthy. Find ways to promote health in your community. Encourage people to get outside, eat healthy, drink water, etc. 

  8. Prayer. Provide regular opportunities for people to pray “together”, share prayer concerns and praises as a regular part of your response.

  9. Offer hope. This can be an anxiety provoking time. Your words and actions will bring hope to your community!

There are numerous ways to respond, but a plan is needed. Please share your ideas and resources with others!

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