March 2, 2021
Dear TCCBC church family, greetings!
It has been one whole year since the government’s coronavirus pandemic declaration and the shelter-in-place order issued! Over the past year as the pandemic evolved, it can be said that it has subverted the traditional American way of life. Some people have been in fear, confused, and lost hope because of the pandemic, their businesses declined, some even closed down. On the other hand, there were those who seized the opportunity to create home operations where they made good profits. More and more companies are allowing their employees to work from home. Some companies claim that not only that the arrangement has not affected their profitability, they benefited from the many reductions in administrative expenses while having significant increases in their annual revenues. For our church, we have also experienced unprecedented online worship with more people seemingly more and more accustomed to worshiping online. Whether the current situation is good or bad for God’s church remains to be seen. But intuitively speaking, the church is not an institution or organization after all, but rather, an organism of members of each other. People need to interact with each other. The mutual relationship and mutual love of God’s children in Christ need to be achieved through spiritual communication and physical interaction of the body.
We are reopening the church for in-person worship this coming Sunday (3/7/2021). I believe everyone’s heart is also ready for it. Unless your physical condition does not permit it, please come back to the church to worship God if you are able to! This reminds me of the time when the Israelites returned to their homeland from a foreign country, and were able to enter God’s sanctuary on Zion to worship God. This is how the psalmist described the mood of the people at that time. “When the LORD brought back the captive ones of Zion, we were like those who dream. Then our mouth was filled with laughter and our tongue with joyful shouting; Then they said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.” The LORD has done great things for us; We are glad.” (Psalms 126:1-3) For a long time, they were unable to ascend and enter the temple of God to worship Him, which caused them to feel sad and depressed. But now by God’s grace, they were able to return to their homeland, “as the streams in the South.” How could their hearts not become excited? How could they not give thanks to God? Certainly, our situation today is not exactly the same. But in a sense, it is a fact that we have been unable to worship in the church this past year. We have hoped that God would open the door for us. We also treasure this opportunity, with earnest and fearful hearts, come to God’s temple and serve our Lord!
What we need to know and support when we return to worship in the church were outlined in last week’s communication letter. Please refer to last week’s letter and I will not repeat them here. Here are the links to the worship livestreams for this coming Sunday.
We are thankful to God for sending Pastor Daryl Watts among us this past one year and four months as our Interim English Pastor, sustaining the steady growth in the English ministries. What is special is Pastor Daryl’s leadership and his church operations experiences have resulted in many valuable guidance to the church. He cared deeply about all levels of the ministries, and did not withhold any of the valuable inputs for us. While we come to the start of Pastor Stephen’s ministry with us shortly, Pastor Daryl is concluding his pastoral ministry at Tri-City Chinese Baptist Church. To express our appreciation to Pastor Daryl Watts, we are holding farewell events for him. The English congregation is organizing an outdoor sendoff event with Pastor Daryl on March 20. Details are still being organized, and will be announced when they are available. On Sunday, March 21, we will use 20 minutes between services (10:30 to 10:50 am) for our official farewell event in the church. All three congregations are invited to join us in the sanctuary to express our appreciation to Pastor Daryl!
If you are unable to come to the church to join the worship service, we will also have a livestream broadcast of the farewell event. You can join the event online using this link. I encourage all of you to do your best to come to the church and use the opportunity to express our appreciation to Pastor Daryl in person.
As a token of our deep appreciation for Pastor Daryl Watts, the church has decided to collect a love offering to thank him for his love and caring for brothers and sisters, and the sweet fellowship and blessings he brought us during his time with our church. You can use the online giving at our church website and select “Love offering for Pastor Daryl”. You can also mail a check to the church payable to TCCBC, and indicate “Love offering for Pastor Daryl” in the remarks. The love offering ends on 3/28/2021. Thank you for your participation.
Looking forward to worshipping in church together,
Pastor Job Lee, Senior Pastor
With fellow church leadership team