Michiana Fil-Am Seventh-day Adventist Church

God's love to everyone

COVID-19 UPDATES

JULY 4, 2020

Members & Friends,

This Sabbath is the first time we will be in our church for worship since March 5. What a journey it's been these last four months!

Our service will start at 11:30. We ask that you go on through the foyer into the sanctuary and find a seating section that accommodates the number in your family/group.

We encourage the use of masks but understand that some are unable to wear them. If you forget yours we will have some available at the door.

Feel free to bring your own bottled water so that the drinking fountain does not become a place where the virus could be passed.

New cleaning guidelines are in place to ensure your safety.

Remember to respect social distances with others and that everyone is politely requested to refrain from handshaking and hugging.

Microphones will not be passed during the service. Everyone will speak from the pulpit mic.

The service will also be on the same Zoom platform that we have been using since March.

I look forward to seeing those of you who are able to come!

God bless!

Roy Castelbuono

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, July 4,
beginning at 11:30 am
Click HERE
to join!

 

JUNE 27, 2020

This week's online worship service is a virtual communion, hosted on the Zoom platform at 11:20 am on Sabbath.  Connect using your computer, tablet, or smart phone using the following link:

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, June 27,
beginning at 11:20 am
Click HERE
to join!

 

JUNE 20, 2020

Our online worship service is once again happening on the Zoom platform at 11:20 am on Sabbath.  Connect using your computer, tablet, or smart phone using the following link:

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, June 20,
beginning at 11:20 am
Click HERE
to join!

 

JUNE 13, 2020

We are meeting for worship on the Zoom platform, at the usual time.  Connect on your computer, tablet, or smart phone using the following link:

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, June 13,
beginning at 11:20 am
Click HERE
to join!

 

JUNE 6, 2020

We are continuing our worship services on the Zoom platform.  Connect with us via computer, tablet, or smart phone by using the following link:

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, June 6,
beginning at 11:20 am
Click HERE
to join!

 

MAY 30, 2020

This weekend we are having a joint service with our sister church, St. Joseph SDA.  The service is being held on the Zoom platform, 10 minutes earlier than our usual time.  Connect with us via computer, tablet, or smart phone by using the following link:

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, May 30,
beginning at 11:10 am
Click HERE
to join!

 

MAY 23,  2020

Our worship service continues to be held on the Zoom platform.  Connect with us via computer, tablet, or smart phone by using the following link:

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, May 23,
beginning at 11:20 am
Click HERE
to join!

 

MAY 9, 2020

Michiana Fil-Am's worship service continues to be held on the Zoom platform.  Connect with us via computer, tablet, or smart phone by using the following link:

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, May 9,
beginning at 11:20 am
Click HERE
to join!

 

Our archaeology lectureship series with L. S. Baker, Jr., also continues this Saturday evening with its final presentation titled "Dancing for Hathor: Is science incompatible with faith?"  This is the last of seven lectures covering some of the major topics related to the Exodus event.

Join us on Saturday, May 9 at 6:30 pm
Click HERE
to join!

MAY 2, 2020

Michiana Fil-Am's worship service continues to be held on the Zoom platform.  Connect with us via computer, tablet, or smart phone by using the following link:

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, May 2,
beginning at 11:20 am
Click HERE
to join!

 

Our archaeology lectureship series with L. S. Baker, Jr. also continues this Saturday evening with a presentation titled "Yahweh’s Army Camp: How was the tent-sanctuary constructed?".  This is the sixth of seven lectures covering some of the major topics related to the Exodus event.

Join us on Saturday, May 2 at 6:30 pm
Click HERE
to join!

 

APRIL 22, 2020

Michiana Fil-Am's worship service will continue to be held on the Zoom platform, connect with us via  computer, tablet, or smart phone by following the link that will be sent by email or by clicking the link below. 

Join us for our Worship Service on Saturday, April 25,
beginning at 11:10 am
Click HERE
to join!


We are also continuing our archaeology lectureship series presented by L. S. Baker, Jr. on Saturday evening.  This week's lecture is titled "Reed, Wave, Wind or Wheel: What Was the Route of the Exodus?", the fifth of seven presentations covering some of the major topics related to the Exodus event. 

Join us on Saturday, April 25 at 6:30 pm
Click HERE
to join!


Looking to join a Sabbath School class?
If you're looking to join one of our Zoom Sabbath School classes, sign-up to receive our email announcements each week.  Zoom links will be included there. 


APRIL 17, 2020

Michiana Fil-Am's worship service will continue to be held on the Zoom platform, connect with us via  computer, tablet, or smart phone by following the link that will be sent by email or by clicking the link below. 

Worship Service begins at 11:20 am
Click HERE
to join!


We are also continuing our archaeology lectureship series presented by L. S. Baker, Jr. on Saturday evening.  This week's lecture is titled "Battle of the Gods: Why Were There 10 Plagues?", the fourth of seven presentations covering some of the major topics related to the Exodus event.  Join us on Zoom at 6:30 pm on April 18. 

Archaeology lecture begins at 6:30 pm
Click HERE
to join!


Looking to join a Sabbath School class?
If you're looking to join one of our Zoom Sabbath School classes, sign-up to receive our email announcements each week.  Zoom links will be included there. 


APRIL 3, 2020

Michiana Fil-Am's worship service will continue to be held on the Zoom platform, a video conference app accessible on computer, tablet, or smart phone by following the link that will be sent by email or by clicking the meeting ID below.  This meeting ID and link will also continue to be used for future Sabbaths. Join us for worship:

Worship Service begins at 11:20 am
Meeting ID: 798-107-530

 

We are also hosting an archaeology lectureship series presented by L. S. Baker, Jr. on Saturday evening.  This week's lecture is titled "The Hippopotamus Pool: Where did Israel live in Egypt?", the second of seven presentations covering some of the major topics related to the Exodus event.  Join us on Zoom at 6:30 pm on April 4.

Archaeology lecture begins at 6:30 pm
Meeting ID: 336-746-549

MARCH 28, 2020

Michiana Fil-Am's worship service and Sabbath School will continue to be held on the Zoom platform, a video conference app accessible on computer, tablet, or smart phone by following the links that will be sent by email or by clicking the meeting IDs below.  These meeting IDs and links will also continue to be used for future Sabbaths. Join us for Sabbath School and worship:

Sabbath School begins at 10:00 am
Meeting ID: 157-224-843

Worship Service begins at 11:20 am
Meeting ID: 798-107-530

 


MARCH 21, 2020

Michiana Fil-Am will be using the Zoom platform to conduct Sabbath School and church services beginning March 21. The Zoom app allows people to connect to a "video conference call" type environment via computer, tablet, or smart phone by clicking a link that will be sent out by email or by clicking the meeting ID below.  Join us for worship:

Meeting ID: 454-386-536

 


MARCH 20, 2020

Friends and members,

Michiana Fil-Am will be using online Zoom meetings for Sabbath School beginning tomorrow.  The Zoom app allows you to connect via your computer, tablet, or smart phone by clicking a link that will be sent out by email later today.

We will have two adult Sabbath School classes online tomorrow (English class 1 and the Creole class) and two children's classes (Junior/Earliteen and High School).  The 2nd adult English class, the adult Filipino class, the Primary class, and Kindergarten classes will be online as soon as possible.

Each class will have its own link, which will be good for as long as we continue to utilize Zoom.  The first time you click a link, you will be prompted to install the Zoom app, and then automatically directed to the online classroom.  After the first time, the link will take you directly to the classroom.

Once in the classroom, you be able to see other participants and they can see you.  It's possible to turn off off the video, but what makes the format personal is being able to see each other just as if we were sitting in a real classroom, so please join in full and living color!  Once in the classroom, there are two ways to view other participants: in the default view, whoever is currently speaking is shown in a larger image, and in gallery mode, all participants are shown the same size in a grid.

Your teacher will be in one of those images, and will lead the study and direct the discussion.  If everyone can be seen, simply raising a hand will get your teacher's attention; then they can call you by name and give you the floor to comment or ask a question.  If connecting with audio only, please speak your name, so the teacher knows you want to share.

Sabbath School classes will start at 10:00 and end at 11:00.  Worship service will follow at 11:15 and there will be a separate link.

So while we cannot meet together to sing, study, and worship as normal, these classes can serve as the means that we connect spiritually and socially, enabling us to grow spiritually and become closer as a church.  We also have the opportunity to connect with others, simply by extending an invitation to join one of these groups.

Groups are also encouraged to set regular days and times during the week where they can connect to study, share their journeys, and pray together!

Thank you all for your willingness to be part of this new journey!

--Pastor Roy


MARCH 14, 2020

Our church service for Sabbath, March 14 will be online only at michianafilam.org. There will be no in-person Sabbath services for the rest of the month of March. Livestreams of an abbreviated service will begin at 11:20am (Eastern Time).

For more information please refer to Pastor Roy's letter in the previous post. Please send questions or feedback to: pastor@michianafilam.org.

For updates, stay tuned to our Facebook page or our website, michianafilam.org.


MARCH  13, 2020

Members & Friends of Michiana Fil-Am,

Two weeks ago no one was talking about Coronavirus as a threat that would require us to radically change how we work, live and worship. Yet in just the last few days Andrews University has closed and all K-12 public schools in Michigan will now close as well. The major sports leagues, MLB, NBA, NHL, NCAA, & PGA have all suspended their seasons. 

The financial markets have been in free fall this week, entire 1st world countries are under quarantine and travel to the U.S. from Europe has been stopped. We are in uncharted territory here. We want to avoid hysteria but we also want to safeguard our families and communities.

Now it has come to directly impact our church. Yesterday the Michigan Conference asked that we abide by the guidelines recommended by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) for faith-based organizations. 

The purpose is to stop the spread of this virus by social distancing. China has employed this in draconian ways and has seen new cases of the virus stabilize and now decline. That is the goal here. 

Since we have failed to have tests available at the local level to be able to get early identification of those who have the virus we are now having to resort to a more radical approach which is to take immediate steps of social distancing as soon as individuals in our communities are identified as carriers of the virus.

As of today [March  13] 4 people in western Michigan have tested positive with the virus.

Consequently the MDHHS is asking us to cancel or postpone gatherings or conferences of 100 people or more in a shared space. Our attendance has averaged between 80 and 120 and so the board decided that this directive impacts us. Here are the options given to us that we discussed last night.

1. Streaming the service where the pastor and limited numbers are present to facilitate the online service. 

2. Conducting worship in the homes of various church members, 

At this point, for the month of March, the church board has chosen to stream services for the duration of the month starting tomorrow. [Also, Sabbath School will not be meeting at the church for the time being.]

Here are additional guidelines to use as we go forward:

  1. Identify safe ways to serve those who are at high risk or vulnerable through outreach and assistance. 
  2. Stay home when sick and notify us so we can be of help. 
  3. Frequently wash your hands and cover coughs and sneezes as this virus primarily enters our bodies through the membranes around the eyes, in the nose and in the mouth which is why they keep telling us to not touch our face with our hands.
  4. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces, like doorknobs, keyboards, cell phones, and light switches. 
  5. Ensure hand hygiene supplies are readily accessible. 
  6. Implement social distancing measures of 3 to 6 feet. 
  7. Reduce in-person gatherings and activities. 
  8. Avoid totally large gatherings greater than 100 people in a shared space. 
  9. If we become a high-risk communities avoid/cancel gatherings of more than 10 people. 
  10. No handshakes, elbow bumps or fist knocks. Try putting your hand over your heart or a slight head nod instead.

The Michigan Conference as well as the Michiana Fil-Am Church recognize that financial giving is going to take a hit as a result of this virus so please take advantage of Adventist Giving Online to continue your faithful support of our local as well as the world church through your tithes and offerings.  If mailing in your check works better then please feel free to give your support that way as well.

 Above all, do not be afraid. What is happening around the world is what we have always believed would happen. And the greater the fear in our world the greater the opportunity to speak to that fear.

People are being shaken, their lives are being disrupted and they are asking serious questions. Take this opportunity, one on one, to bring them answers that will still their hearts and lead them to God!

“Do not fear, for I am with you, do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you, I will uphold you with my righteous hand.” (Isaiah 41:10).

May God bless you each throughout this trying time!

Roy Castelbuono
Pastor, Michiana Fil-Am SDA Church