Responding to COVID-19: Resources for Churches

Open Letter Against Racism and Hatred

Online Sunday Gatherings

Each week we will update  links for online Sunday gatherings and/or worship materials for churches who are open to sharing this information with others. To include your church in this list, please complete this survey by midnight the Thursday before.

Idea Bank: Churches Being Church

One idea is to create baskets with items such as cleaning supplies, gloves, toilet paper, a resource guide for living in a world dealing with COVID-19. The baskets let these residents know you are thinking of them and provide important resources and supplies for a time that can feel pretty scary for many of us.
Congregational Church of San Mateo has created a Face Mask Brigade. Members are sewing face masks for health care workers, who are reporting there is not enough masks for the need. There is evidence that hand-made masks work nearly as good as regular surgical masks. Contact CCSM for more information and/or watch this tutorial.
Deacons and other members receive a list of members to call and check in with regularly and therapists and trained counselors in the congregation check in with those who are making the calls so the caregivers are also being cared for. Those making the calls are given particular questions to ask and also will find out if the member would like a call from the Pastor for a particular need.
Daily text sent to all members with something fun (like, “Time for a Dance Break!”) or an encouraging word to let them know we are all connected in this time.
Periodic video check-ins with members where each member is invited to share 1-2 minutes about how they are doing. This lowers the anxiety level when people can share.
Online “Bedtime Story” time for families a few times a week where a reader reads a few books and then everyone sings a song together. This short online time ends with a bedtime prayer.
Some nursing homes have iPads and have invited families to sign up for facetime with their loved ones. At the scheduled time they bring the iPad to the resident and the family/friends/church family is able to visit. (If some of your members are in a residential facility that is not allowing visitors, you can find out if they are offering this. If they are not, will they allow your church to donate some iPads in order to set this up. It is a way to help your resident member connect with church family and their own loved ones as well as providing outreach to other residents who would like to visit with their families.
One woman said that she cannot visit her father and because he is 90 years old and has trouble hearing, online video calls do not work. So every day she writes him a letter. Letters and calls are much appreciated by people for whom technology is a struggle and, honestly, for all of us!
One church set up a “help your neighbor” email address where members of the community can send emails to let the church know about food scarcity issues they are experiencing. A member of the church monitors the inbox and creates a spreadsheet of where there is need. Other members of the church have volunteered to help supply food so when a need comes in, those members are contacted and the church facilitates that person receiving help.
Another way to help your neighbor is the Fremont-based Tri-City at Risk program.

Chaplain Resources

  • Chaplaincy Inovation Lab shares resources for chaplains encountering coronavirus, click HERE
  • Hospice Foundation of America (HFA)-webinars specifically related to the COVID-19 crisis on topics like funerals/memorials during Covid 19, End of Life in nursing homes during COVID-19
  • Chaplaincy Innovation Lab (CIL) has a website  and a Facebook page hosting weekly free town halls and pertinent webinars and zoom meetings
  • Emory’s Cognitive-Based Compassion Training (CBCT) offers free, live, online compassion practice and fellowship sessions. To join or for more information click HERE.

COVID 19 Resources