Dear Peace Members,
Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers has signed an Executive Order mandating face coverings “whenever you are indoors or in an enclosed space, other than a private residence.” This means all Wisconsin residents who attend a church service will be expected to wear masks unless they have a medical condition that prevents them from doing so. Pastors who are preaching or presiding at worship services won’t need to wear a face covering as long as they are more than 6 feet away from other individuals.
Since this mandate is in effect August 1 through the month of September, our upcoming worship services will be impacted .
Your congregational leadership understands that this is a controversial topic and there are members of Peace who stand firmly on opposite sides of the issue. Reasonable people can debate how effective masks are. Reasonable people can have friendly debates over whether or not the government guidelines are too restrictive or not aggressive enough. However, this much is not debatable: our Lord directs us to obey our government unless that government would ever ask us to do something that goes against God’s Word. In fact, that was well covered a few weeks ago in worship focusing on the 4th Commandment (here’s a link to the service and Pastor Waldshmidt’s sermon – https://peacehartford.org/weekly-worship-july-23-26-2020/).
Let us all remember that brothers and sisters in Christ can disagree, even disagree with friendly and reasonable debate. Let’s also remember that there are matters that are much more important than mask wearing or not mask wearing. May our language and our actions express the love that God has first shown to us in Christ—as well as the unity that we enjoy in Him. We who are so dearly loved by the Lord — together let’s agree that this debatable issue about masks will not divide us, take our hearts and minds off of Christ, or rob us of our unity.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things – Philippians 4:8
A few additional notes:
Peace still offers online worship for those who are not comfortable attending in-person worship (you can find a link to the latest service on the home page)
A limited amount of homemade and disposable masks will be available for worshipers, but we encourage you to use your own if you are able.
If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to reach out to one of the Pastors.
Jesus Bless and Keep You!
Your Peace Leadership