Important Church Update

regarding the current COVID-19 emergency.

Frank Brand

Senior Pastor

COVID-19 FAQs

What time will the services be held?

Services will be at 9:00 AM and 10:45 AM. Both services will be the same and the 10:45 service will be live-streamed you can find it on our website www.firstbaptistestero.com.

What if the service I came for reaches full capacity before I get a seat?

There will be overflow seating available in the Fellowship House where you can watch the service live on the TV.

How long will the services be?

The services will last 45-50 minutes.

Do I have to wear a mask?

Yes. For the safety of everyone who attends, we are requiring all people ages 8 and up to wear a mask. Thank you for your understanding.

Why is someone asking my name before I enter?

We want to make sure that we are able to contact everyone should it be necessary to convey any news.

How will people be seated in the sanctuary?

We ask that you sit with your family only. We will have groups of chairs with each group being spaced apart. PLEASE NOTE: We will be using white plastic chairs for everyone. These can be easily sanitized between uses. Should you have any issues where this might be a problem, we encourage you to bring a small cushion from home.

Are the restrooms open for use?

Yes. The restrooms will be available if you need them. We will have someone there to clean the restroom between each use for your safety.

Will food and drinks be allowed?

In order to keep everyone safe and wearing a mask at all times, we will not be allowing food and drinks inside the building at this time. As a result, our café will not be serving any snacks or coffee until further notice.

Will there be any children’s church or nursery available?

No. During the beginning phases, we encourage you to worship as a family together in the sanctuary. Please feel free to bring coloring supplies or game sheets to keep them occupied while they listen. We promise that your children will be loved and accepted even if they provide some extra noise😊We would be grateful if you silenced all electronics to minimize distraction.

Are there any other small groups or classes?

No. At this time there will not be any in person gatherings, small groups, or services at the church beyond our two Sunday morning services. We are still actively seeking more ways to stay connected while remaining safe.

How do I find our social media pages?

If you would like to follow us on any of our social media platforms, click on this link which will allow you to get to all of them! Linktr.ee/FirstBaptistEstero

Will the offering plates be passed around?

No. This is another measure we are taking to keep everyone safe. There will be deposit boxes available at the exits where you can drop checks or cash. (No envelopes will be provided. If you would like to use one, please bring your own.) You can also give on the website at www.firstbaptistestero.com or you can text the word GIVE to 239-294-8444. You will be prompted to enter your payment information the first time you text. After the first time you can just text GIVE and it will send you a text asking how much you would like to give. After that, you’re done! If you would like help or more information, email Carissa at carissa@firstbaptistestero.com

How are our finances as a church?

Good. Through the continued generosity of our people and the grace of God, we are currently in a good place financially. We trust that the Lord will preserve us through the difficult months to come. In that, we ask for your continued prayer and generosity. As a church, we will continue to seek first the kingdom of God, entrusting that He will give us all things we need and that He will work all things together for His glory and our good.

What if I’m not ready to return or don’t feel comfortable yet?

Don’t worry! We do not want anyone to come back before they feel 100% safe doing so. If you would like to be with us in spirit on Sunday morning, we will be live streaming the 10:45 service on our Youtube channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqyolLtVilRATFxzTFjsA1w or via the website www.firstbaptistestero.com.

What if my question wasn’t answered in this list?
We would love to answer it for you! Please email office@firstbaptistestero.com or call us at 239-992-0881. We love you and can’t wait to see you!

Re-opening plan

I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Hopefully, it’s not a train, but the beginning of the end of the COVID-19 season. I am looking forward to worshipping with my church family – I have missed y’all. 

It is time to gather together once again and worship the Lord. 

HOW DOES JUNE 7th SOUND? 

We will also be livestreaming our services beginning June 7th. Hopefully, this will help everyone that is unable to attend in person to remain connected. Please do not feel pressured to return right away. I want each of us to be smart about all of this and follow the suggestions of the CDC and our governing authorities for each of our households.  As your pastor, I encourage each of you to return only after you have complete peace about entering to any type of public gathering. Our primary goal should be to honor the Lord with every decision that each of us make and that includes when to end your quarantine. 

I realize that not everyone will like the re-entry plan. Just as there are differences of opinion from one church to next, so also there will be from one member to the next.  Some will think it’s too soon to gather, while others wonder why we ever stopped. Perhaps some will think we are being too cautious while others will not think we have been cautious enough. Please know that much prayer and consideration has been put into our plan for returning. We will continue to adapt as circumstances change. As for now, here is the plan –

If June 7th sounds good and you choose to return to in-person activities at FBCE, please follow this list of guidelines: 

Please return only if over the last two weeks you-

  • Have not been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 
  • Have not had a cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat 
  • Have not had a fever 
  • Have not had a new loss of taste or smell
  • Have not experienced vomiting or diarrhea

While we all look forward to being together again physically as a church family, we must also be vigilant to make sure that we protect one another as well by adhering to these guidelines. 

Phase 1: Beginning Sunday, June 7th, we will resume in-person worship services at First Baptist Church Estero. 

  • Worship times: 9 a.m. & 10:45 a.m. Each service will last no more than 50 minutes. 
  • All attendees will enter the facility through the doors clearly marked ENTRANCE. 
  • The entrance doors will open 15 minutes prior to the starting time for each worship service. 
  • While waiting for the doors to open, please observe 6’ distancing between family units. 
  • Once inside, please follow the directions of the ministerial staff as well as the signs and directional markings. 
  • Once inside the sanctuary, please move quickly to a seat. Unfortunately, you may not be able to sit in the exact place in which you were accustomed to sitting prior to the COVID crisis. Rows and sections have been roped off to allow six feet between attendees. 
  • We will follow the recommended percentage of attendees provided by the CDC and local authorities. 
  • If necessary, we will also provide overflow space in the Fellowship House via simulcast (yes, it will be a livestream). 
  • We have removed the books, envelopes, pens or other literature from the back of the chairs, and will not be distributing bulletins, in order to limit the items that may be touched by multiple people. Bring your own Bible, pen and paper to take notes! 
  • We will not promote a welcome time consisting of handshaking or elbow bumps. 
  • We will not pass the offering plates – offering boxes will be available at the exit doors. Please bring your own envelope. You may also give digitally (need help giving digitally/elexio/text giving – call 239-253-3864) or send through the US mail. 
  • We will exit the sanctuary after worship through the doors clearly marked EXIT. Ushers will dismiss section by section quickly and orderly while observing the 6’ distancing rule. Please also refrain from touching doors or other surfaces as much as possible on your way out. We are taking every precaution we can to make you feel safe and secure when you decide to worship in person. Please feel free to bring your own face masks, and to wear them during worship as masks will be required during Phase 1. If you still do not feel comfortable returning to worship in person this soon, please plan to join us via livestream. 

Resuming in-person worship gatherings is just the first of three phases included in our plan to reopen our church for in-person activities and ministries. Phase 2 of our plan will include resuming Sunday School classes and other small group gatherings. However, Phase 2 will not begin before July 5th; and that will be contingent upon the safe and successful implementation of Phase 1. 

Phase 3, which will not begin before August 9th, will include resuming ALL in-person church activities and ministries. However, once again, Phase 3 will be contingent upon the safe and successful implementation of Phases 1 and 2. If you have any further questions regarding our reopening plans, please call the church office at 239-992-0881 or email office@firstbaptistestero.com. If you have a complaint, notify your least favorite deacon and proceed to give him an ear full. 

Love, 

Pastor Frank

Deacon’s Ministry Update

Weekly Update – March 25, 2020

Hello church family,

Due to the recommendations from the CDC and the World Health Organization, as well as our governor, who are all advising against large public gatherings of all kinds (not just churches), we will offer an ONLINE SERVICE ONLY, AVAILABLE THIS SUNDAY.  All on campus events are suspended until further notice.  We are doing so out of an abundance of caution and out of care for the most vulnerable in our community. We are not being fearful or irrational; we are hoping to be a part of helping the situation instead of contributing more harm. We trust that God is using even this for our good and for His glory.

Here’s how you can join our service online:

Click the WATCH SERMONS

Bless each of you, 
Pastor Frank 

 

Pray We all need to be praying for the Lord to intervene in this time of fear and uncertainty.  Pray for healing for those who are sick and for protection for yourself and your family.  Pray for the leaders of our nation as they make critical decisions about our health and well-being. 

(II Chronicles 7:14)