NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Churches, Mosques, and other various religious establishments have been closed for almost two months all across Arkansas.
As the state slowly begins to reopen, one local church is sharing their process to help others that may be struggling with getting back to normal.
Dr. Brian Sheppard is the Pastor at Park View Baptist Church in North Little Rock and officially opened the doors this past Sunday.
He says he used posted signs and marked off pews to help keep people informed about the process the church was taking to help keep people safe.
“There has been a lot of speculation on whether churches should be open or not and some say ‘hey you need to be open you faith should be bigger than your fear,’ and it’s not so much about fear but it’s about protecting ourselves and those around you,” he explains.
Dr. Sheppard says his use of posted signs allowed members of the congregation to easily navigate through the new transition while not feeling bullied or pressured into being unsafe.
“There are those that still don’t feel comfortable and we respect that,” Dr. Sheppard says. “So those that weren’t here they did watch by live stream. We had more people watch the live stream then we did in service, but that’s okay too.”
Dr. Sheppard who also serves as a faith-counselor said it’s important to remember that establishments should be helping people navigate and offering options for those who are still not quite ready to come outdoors.
“We want to provide the worship service to anyone that wants to watch it in their own safe place. However, they may feel that is,” says Dr. Sheppard.
Other local religious establishments have said they too are making major changes to their services. Faith organizations everywhere will have to endure long-term changes to their worship in order to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
While every establishment is different, Dr. Sheppard recommends calling and inquiring about any new protocols and practices currently in place.
Click here to learn more about what Dr. Sheppard is doing.