Friends,

We have been hard at work to design plans that will both protect the people of Bethany and continue to serve them. The health and safety of our people and those in the community who use Bethany are our primary concern. We are planning for the worst and praying for the best.
 
Amidst concerns surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19), we want to let you now how Bethany is responding.
 
Our leadership team is carefully and continually monitoring this situation. As information evolves, this page is the primary, most up-to-date place for you to receive answers to commonly asked questions. We are committed to doing everything we can to provide a safe environment for our church family and surrounding community.

IS BETHANY GATHERING THIS SUNDAY?

No. Governor Larry Hogan just announced several closures due to the COVID-19 virus. He has ordered all public schools closed from March 16-March 27th. He also stated all gatherings of 250 people or more should be cancelled. In light of the Governors statement and our policy in accordance with HCPSS we feel it best to close the church. Therefore, effective immediately, all church activities and outside group activities including worship services are cancelled through Friday, March 27th.

A small group of worship leaders are planning on live streaming the 9am & 11am worship services this Sunday on our Facebook page. A livestream link will also be found on the homepage of our website.

ARE BETHANY BUILDINGS OPEN ON WEEKDAYS?

No. If you need to reach the office please do so between 10AM and 2PM Monday through Friday at 410 465 2919 or email the Office Administrator. You can also reach Pastor Andrew Cooney by calling 304 582 8889.  Over the next two weeks, we’ll decide on what to do beyond that time frame as the situation unfolds.  

  WHAT PRECAUTIONS CAN PEOPLE TAKE TO PROTECT THEMSELVES?

We encourage everyone to take certain steps to protect themselves and others from the coronavirus, flu, and other illnesses, including:

  • Washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds;
  • Using hand sanitizer when soap and water is not available;
  • Not touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands;
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick;
  • Staying home if you are sick;
  • Covering your cough or sneeze;
  • Disinfecting objects and surfaces regularly.

WHAT PRECAUTIONS IS BETHANY TAKING TO MAKE THE PREMISES AS SAFE AS POSSIBLE?

Bethany is taking extra cleaning precautions at this time. This includes:
  • Wiping down all common area touchpoints (e.g., doors, light switches, countertops, etc.) throughout the day with an EPA certified disinfectant.
  • Placing hand sanitizers in common areas throughout the buildings.
  • Performing added in-depth cleaning of our facilities on a regular basis. These deep cleans will likely involve closing Bethany buildings on certain weekdays, and we will include all information about scheduled closures on this webpage (see above under, “Are Bethany buildings open on weekdays?”).
HOW CAN I BETTER UNDERSTAND THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)?

Coronavirus is a type of virus that causes respiratory illness — an infection of the airways and lungs. COVID-19 is a new strain of coronavirus. It is part of the same family of coronaviruses that includes the common cold. The coronavirus outbreak was first identified in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. Since then, the virus has spread to other countries.

The most common early symptoms appear between 2 and 14 days after infection. Symptoms can be mild to severe. They include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like high blood pressure, heart problems or diabetes, are more likely to develop serious illness. People with fever, cough and difficulty breathing should seek medical attention. Most people recover from the disease without needing special treatment.

Like many other viruses, the coronavirus (COVID-19) seems to spread from person-to-person through a cough, sneeze, or kiss. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is the leading national public health institute of the United States and the Agency charged with monitoring the outbreak. They will update this status regularly on their website. You can also find more information from reputable organizations HERE.

HOW SHOULD I RESPOND SPIRITUALLY TO THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)?

There are some practical ways you can help. Trust in God. Pray – for your friends, those who are sick around the world, health care providers, researchers, and government officials. Look for way to make a difference – be a source of peace, help, and love. Watch your words – what you say and how you say it matters. Stay in touch – call others, watch our worship online, continue to give. We are trying to bless you and others and your gifts matter. You can give online, through the new Church Center app on your phone, on your computer by going to our website*, or by mail. It’s Lent – reflect on the brevity of life and the good news of Jesus.
 
I hope this brings clarity. Please let us know if you have questions or concerns.
Pastor Andrew
 
*Click on your account in top right corner of page to access giving and other activities.
 
(Information on this page was used or adapted from McLean Bible Church and New Life Community Church)