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Dear <<First Name>>,

To assist our hospitals and medical personnel with trying to slow the spread of the very contagious COVID-19 virus, we will be meeting ONLY ONLINE for a few weeks beginning Sunday, March 15. THERE WILL BE NO SERVICES AT FBC WESTBROOK THROUGH 3/29. At that time we will reevaluate and make decisions for the future.

While the virus is showing itself not a major problem for the young and the healthy, it is showing itself a very serious issue for the elderly and immunocompromised. Doctors fear that the medical system will become overwhelmed, as it is in Italy where too many require treatment simultaneously. We will pray for our medical professionals, our caregivers, our elderly and infirm and do what we can to support them - even if that means "social distancing."

The other challenge we have is that we have a pastor that had a liver transplant (me!) and now has to lay low and be bored like crazy, missing people. Yes, I've finally been given the order to stay close to home. The church can easily go on with others teaching on Sunday mornings so this is just another small piece of the equation.

Is society overreacting? Hopefully, in a few months, all the news stories will be about how few deaths there were and how we overreacted as a society. That is exactly the goal! Maine, being the oldest state in the nation by average age, must proceed with caution.

Join us online Sunday morning at 10 AM at www.facebook.com/firstbaptist.westbrook

OPEN DOOR KITCHEN
At this time we are trying to figure out how to best serve the needs of our community since we will be unable to host the large meal with everyone in such close proximity. We're talking about a few possibilities. Stay tuned for details.

Reach out to one another and check on one another, especially our elderly folks,

Stay well,
Scott Linscott
207-400-2481 (if you are part of our church body and need help, please call)


SOME ADVICE FROM MARTIN LUTHER?

When Martin Luther was dealing with The Black Death, he wrote these wise words that can help inform the way we approach things happening in our world right now...

"I shall ask God mercifully to protect us. Then I shall fumigate, help purify the air, administer medicine and take it. I shall avoid places and persons where my presence is not needed in order not to become contaminated and thus perchance inflict and pollute others and so cause their death as a result of my negligence. If God should wish to take me, he will surely find me and I have done what he has expected of me and so I am not responsible for either my own death or the death of others. If my neighbor needs me however I shall not avoid place or person but will go freely as stated above. See this is such a God-fearing faith because it is neither brash nor foolhardy and does not tempt God."

Luther's Works Volume 43 pg 132 the letter "Whether one may flee from a Deadly Plague" written to Rev. Dr. John Hess


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