August 20, 2021
CPC Friends and Family,
Over the past several weeks, more and more people in our immediate vicinity have been diagnosed with Covid-19. This uptick in cases has coincided with the CDC’s recommendation that all people wear masks in indoor public spaces, regardless of vaccination status. The leadership of our church agrees with these recommendations. We ask that you please wear your masks while indoors on our church campus.
We continue to base our decision on thoughtful prayer, discussion, and biblical ethics. It is important for our church and community to know our theological rationale for adhering to the CDC’s recommendations.
The Great Commandment of Jesus says that the core of our faith is to love God with our whole being and to love our neighbors as ourselves. In this, Jesus invites us to put the welfare of others on par with our own personal welfare. The apostle Paul adds to this fundamental gospel truth when addressing the Philippians to “count others more significant than yourselves.” (Phil. 2:3)
The ultimate expression of the welfare of others is Jesus’ incarnation and crucifixion. Through His sacrifice, Jesus purchased us and that is why we call Him “Lord.” Now, our lives are not our own (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Jesus said, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself, take up His cross daily and follow me.” (Luke 9:23). Denying ourselves is a daily, difficult practice and requires the work of the Holy Spirit. We deny ourselves and our personal comfort by wearing masks because we believe that it is beneficial for our church family.
Finally, hear these words: “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love” (Ephesians 4:2). Our strongest witness to a broken and hurting world is our ability to love one another and unify around the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Let us all take this opportunity to give each other the benefit of the doubt. Show grace. Demonstrate love. Keep Christ at the center.
The CPC Session
Carmel Presbyterian Church exists to glorify God and make disciples by Connecting People to Christ through small acts of great love every day.