UPDATE: October 2021 With the suspension of the Shelby County mask mandates we are informing the congregation that the personal choice to wear a mask on our campus will continue to remain the decision of each individual. As a church, we are attempting to return to a complete "reopening" of all of our church ministries. We pray that you will join us in this endeavor.
August 2021 **Shelby County Mask Update** We are reminding the congregation once again about our current policies and practices for our public gatherings. Because we are concerned about public safety and individual health, we are recommending that those in attendance take great care to protect themselves and others by all the appropriate means -- especially if one's immunity is compromised. For Sunday services, we provide two indoor locations for participation on our campus in order to provide the "distancing" needed while also providing the spiritual care so greatly desired in these days. We are also recommending that those who wish to follow our ministry via the internet may access our streaming channel at this <LINK> For more information and details, please speak with one of our church Elders.
June 2021 The Session is returning our church to pre-pandemic ministry schedules. This process will comply with the "Tennessee Pledge," as revised on April 2021, by the Governor's Office of Faith-Based Initiatives. Please note the announcement of group meetings and activities recommencing as mentioned in our newsletter, website, and bulletins. To contact the church leadership and staff with any comments or questions, locate the "Comment Box" at the bottom of our website home page and submit your request! Thank you!
April 6, 2021 [BREAKING ANNOUNCEMENT] Although our April newsletter has been published, we will use this space (along with our Sunday bulletins & emails) to inform the congregation of the recent discussions and decisions made at the 4/6/21 Session Meeting. The Session supports returning our church to pre-pandemic ministry schedules. This process will be in compliance with state mandates and in multiple steps to assure congregational cooperation and program staffing. Please plan for the following dates: - April 25: Observance of the Lord's Table - May 9: Return of 10AM Sunday School Classes - May 9: Bibles & hymnbooks will return to pews - July 4: Observance of the Lord's Table These initial decisions and dates have been set with the knowledge that future modifications may be required. There are yet many more concerns to evaluate regarding all other aspects of our meetings together. The Session invites the congregation to supply their input regarding our future plans for ministry together. For Christ's Kingdom, The Richland ARP Session
REISSUED: Spring 2021
REISSUED: February 2021
Tennessee Governor, Bill Lee, issued the following special order [CLICK HERE]. Our church has sought to comply with state and Shelby County mandates during these past several months of the Covid-19 pandemic (note the thread of announcements below). We have suspended many of our regular meetings and we have sought to gather faithfully according to expressed guidelines. We are thankful for the special provisions outlined for churches in recent orders regarding the definition of "social gatherings."
Because we do not wish to be a place of injury to anyone in these days, please know that we are complying with expected protocols. We are further asking that individuals who have personal concerns about their present state of health and safety to heed both their conscience and their care for themselves and others by refraining from attending our services, presently. We further suggest that those who are unable to attend at this time to please access the "Our Service" tab on this website to scroll to our catalog of past sermons archived there.
Grace & Peace to you,
Rev. Kent Moorlach
REISSUED: October 13, 2020
REISSUED: September 1, 2020
July 7, 2020
At the stated meeting of our Church Officers (both Deacons and Elders) on July 7, 2020, discussion was had regarding future church ministry and activities. From the very beginning of responding to this pandemic, the primary response for our church has been to cooperate with state and local health requirements -- which we have been doing since March 18, 2020. Now, four months later, we are still taking our cues from these agencies. Ongoing, we will continue to pray for the possibility of an expanded array of meetings free from current restrictions. These prayers are also connected to our desire to see greater well-being and health in our community and country.
We further pray that you will benefit from our Lord's Day worship services each week, whether as an "in house" attender, outdoor listener, or online follower. Please note that additional meetings will be taking place in the fall that will comply with whatever "phase" our county may be -- in order to provide spiritual strength and encouragement, which is so needed in these days!
Thank you for your prayers and support,
Rev. Kent Moorlach
June 2, 2020
Dear Church Family,
The Richland Session met to consider many items that have been "tabled" due to the quarantine of the past two months. Now, after a successful first worship service held this past Lord's Day, we are reminding the congregation that we are still in "phase two" of returning from lock-downs. This means that food & drinks, use of kitchens, childcare, and groups meeting in small rooms, etc. is not permitted. We will continue to comply with these "phase two" protocols for our Sunday morning worship services at 11AM; which includes both indoor and outdoor worship.
If you are part of a small group that can abide by "phase two" practices, and would like to utilize the campus mid-week, please make your request to the Clerk of Session for Session consideration and permission.
May God bless and keep His church!
May 27, 2020
Dear Richland ARP Family,
Seeking to walk justly, mercifully, and humbly with both our God and neighbor, our Session has voted to resume Lord's Day Services at 11AM, May 31, 2020 - Pentecost Sunday!
Although this is our regular service time, we are informing the congregation that new considerations and protocols will be in place for our public gatherings. We are seeking to comply with the standards established by the 'Tennessee Faith Based & Community Initiatives' document which can be read here: https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/governorsoffice-documents/House%20of%20Worship%20Guidance%20FBCI.pdf (Contained in this document are links to other stipulations outlined by the governor's task force, which are also the standards for Shelby County.)
What to expect: (Amended, May 29, 2020)
- The primary consideration of the following guidelines are: "protect vulnerable populations and reduce the spread" of infections. PLEASE, if your health is compromised in any way, plan to attend at a future date when feeling confident about your status. - Regular cleaning/sanitizing will take place in our highly trafficked areas. - As established by our county and state, we are now in "Phase Two" of public gatherings. We may not exceed 50% occupancy of our sanctuary. We will maintain that standard. - There will be NO Bible Classes during the Sunday School hour at 10AM. - There will be NO nursery child care or Children's Church (children coming forward for a message, or being excused from the service will NOT be practiced). - Masks will be available for those desiring them. They must be disposed after use. - Hand sanitizer will be available throughout the campus. - Ministry staff & volunteers will be required to submit to a "no touch" thermometer check prior to each service and evaluated. - Please refrain from physical contact. - Our service order will be posted online by Sunday morning for those wishing to use internet enabled devices. --- Service bulletins will be laid out upon "open" pews. - Pews will be cordoned off to maintain family social distancing rules. - No group choir presentations. - No coffee service. - The Gospel will be preached! An audio recording of the sermon will be posted immediately after the service at our church website. - Tithes and financial gifts will be received in offering plates situated near the exit. - Please follow "social distance" practices when entering & exiting the building.
As we conclude a 10 week hiatus from all public gatherings at our church, we must first THANK the congregation for their prayers, patience, support, and online presence!
Secondly, there are still NO group gatherings permitted on the campus unless, and until, approved by the Session. Sunday services at 11AM are presently the only meetings on the calendar -- until further evaluation and notice.
Finally, there is a precious passage we all know… "I was glad when they said to me, "Let us go into the house of the LORD." This is the first verse of Psalm 122. This verse will have special significance for us as it has been a long time since our gathering together! We should be especially glad as we celebrate on Pentecost Sunday! The LORD has gifted us with His presence, and together we are an expression of His kingdom on earth! The last two verses of Psalm 122 are also appropriate for our day, "For the sake of my brethren and companions, I will now say, "Peace be within you." Because the house of the LORD our God, I will seek your good."
Please share the news that we are meeting once again under these provisions. God bless,
Rev. Kent Moorlach
May 26, 2020
The Richland ARP Session met in a called meeting and voted to resume public worship services beginning on Pentecost Sunday, May 31, 2020, at 11AM. More details related to this "opening" will be posted in a few days. Thank you for your prayers and patience,
May 1, 2020
Dear Church Family,
Richland's Session has voted unanimously to postpone all church activities until further notice. Although "phases of re-opening" are now permitted, these are still contingent upon ongoing tests and reporting which may spike up and curtail public gatherings once again. The logistical control and alteration of regular meetings is also a cited concern. Our desire is for everyone to remain safe and healthy, and to love our neighbors by doing our part to inhibit the spread of this infectious virus. Therefore, we ask the congregation to regularly visit our website regarding services and meeting updates. Please visit our website to communicate with us! Note the "Comment Boxes" where you may type us email messages for our consideration, prayers, and response. May God advance His kingdom in these days.
April 15, 2020
The Officers of our church have again called for the continued cancellation of public events up until April 30, which will comply with the mandate of TN Governor Bill Lee. When a new decision or deadline is announced, it will be publicized here.
April 1, 2020
The Officers of our church have again called for the continued cancellation of public events up until April 14, which complies with the mandate announced by TN Governor Bill Lee. When a new decision or deadline is announced, it will be publicized here.
March 26, 2020
The Officers of our church have called for the continued quarantine policy recommended by the CDC and the Mayor of Shelby County until further review set for April 11, 2020. This directive is consistent with the 3/18/2020 statement found below. We continue to pray for your good health and safety!
March 18, 2020
Dear Church Family, Neighbors, and Friends,
In light of the recent pronouncements related to the "national emergency" of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Session of Richland ARP has decided to CANCEL ALL MEETINGS, for the next two weeks (a further assessment will be published the first of April).
This immediate suspension includes Sunday School, nursery care, the Called Congregational Meeting, Wednesday Nights, Sunday Potluck, and any and all upcoming meetings on the church campus extending even to those of standing committees or community groups.
*NOTE: Our pastor will be preparing and presenting a service for each Lord's Day. Elements of this service will be recorded and posted online for Sunday. Our entire service order can be followed at home via links on our website. We desire for households to access the "Our Service" tab on our website for family worship times.
It is our goal to: honor the safety of our families and community; ensure the propriety to properly quarantine; and to find hope and healing in the ways God has ordained.
Please contact our church Elders through the comment box below if you have any needs, comments, or concerns we can address.
Please pray for God's purposes, and for His will to be known and obeyed.
By grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone,