A lot has changed over the last two weeks in the way we are forced to live our lives due to the ongoing threat of the COVID-19 virus.
For the time being, we can no longer go to movie theaters or sit down in restaurants as social distancing has become the new norm in society.
But Growing Oaks Community Church Pastor Tommy Massey is determined to carry on his mission of spreading the Christian word of God, so he decided to make a radical move to serve his devoted congregation and the community by creating a drive-in worship service.
Growing Oaks hosted two services last Sunday to spread the Christian message and give people hope during a very frightening time in world history.
Massey, who has been the pastor at the church since 2011, said due to Gov. Roy Cooper’s No. 117 Executive Order last week, which prohibits mass gatherings to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus, he said church officials were forced to think outside of the box.
The team initially planned to stream the service, but after receiving so many calls and texts from members of his church family, he really wanted to find a way for people to get together while still observing social distancing protocol.
So Massey and his team began putting together a stage in front of the church and reached out to Tim Robertson, owner of the Eden Drive-In movie theater, to get advice on getting FM transmitters to broadcast the sermon on the radio on 91.3. That way, folks could listen safely inside their vehicles.
“Really, it’s been a whirlwind I’ll tell you. We have seen some other places around the country that are doing that, but it is something that we have never done before. The coronavirus has everybody a little bit scared to go out in public and we all miss seeing our friends and our church family, but I think this is a way we can still get together while still observing our social distancing. It is a chance for us to pray, sing and worship God,” said Massey.
His message to the congregation was simple, but comforting to those looking for answers in uncertain times.
“First and foremost, God is still in control. This pandemic, the coronavirus, this is not something that caught God by surprise. He knew this was coming and he’s given us what we need to get through this. It is a scary time, especially those at high risk, but we know we can trust God and he loves us and he’s going to take care of us . . . I preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. In that there is power, there is strength and joy from that,” Massey said.
Growing Oaks Community Church is located at 7921 US 158 in Reidsville. For more information on drive-in church visit their website at growingoakschurch.com or call 336-347-0032.