Over the last month, the COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically shifted how we do ministry as individual churches and as an association of churches. All of us are in uncharted territory, having to make unprecedented decisions. We take comfort in the fact that God holds our situation in His hand. He is not taken by surprise when unanticipated events arise.
On the association level, major decisions are being made regarding our annual conference. The Council of 18 conference committee has developed an alternative option, which was met with full council approval. GARBC leaders desire to equip churches to do ministry, while wanting to ensure the safety of those who minister. Thanks to technology we have the potential to accomplish both objectives!
Virtual Attendance will now be available for the 2020 annual conference. The conference schedule and registration will be adjusted to accomodate this new avenue of attendance. In addition to individual virtual attendance registration, we will be offering an all-church virtual attendance registration fee, which will allow a church to have multiple logins for church members or churches to host a simulcast for their congregation. Virtual attendance registration will be opening in the next couple of weeks.
The association business meeting will still be taking place. Those attending the conference virtually will have an opportunity to be part of the discussion and the items being voted on. In light of the events of past several weeks, we have extended the Council of 18 nomination deadline to April 15, 2020. Be sure to submit your nomination of candidates today.
At this time we still have our contract with the hotel. We will continue to monitor the situation and make further adjustments to the onsite hosting of the conference as necessary to ensure the health and safety of the Sacramento community as well as our constituency. Additional information and details will be distributed via GARBCconference.org, emails, and social media. Look for an overview of the conference in the upcoming May/June Baptist Bulletin.
We are excited, with the addition of virtual attendance, to have the unique opportunity of welcoming those who would typically not be able to join us due to travel expenses, scheduling conflicts, or other obligations. More people will be able to participate in the conference! We urge you to make joining us for the 2020 GARBC Conference a top priority.