This page is dedicated to providing the most up-to-date information regarding health precautions at South Fellowship Church due to COVID-19. Please continue to check back for updates or subscribe to our enewsletter to stay informed.

UPDATED  11.24.21

MASK MANDATE UPDATE

Dear South family,

As many of you may have read this week, Arapahoe County issued a public health order requiring masks in all public places. In this case, this includes churches.

Last night we met as elders, who are called by the South community to serve it and to serve you. Throughout the last 18 months, our policy has been to follow the local health authorities as they have had the difficult job of managing a new disease and in this case, hospital capacity. Along those lines, we have not made masks a requirement for the last 6 months. In light of the new mandate, we unanimously agreed that we would continue to abide by the local authority even though we had hoped not to be in this position again. We believe this was a good reading of Romans 13 and reflects living in the way of Jesus. We feel that this request is not overly burdensome even if it is not our preference and has limits on its timeframe. It does not go against anything Jesus commanded us to do. If that were the case our higher call would be to protest it.

South is full of people that have different stances on how we respond to Covid-19, masking, vaccinations, etc. As a pastor in this community, it has been wonderful to see your faces and to get to know what you actually look like! I know for some in our community, well, you would like us to have kept requiring them and that this season has been hard for you. Thank you for your grace. I know for some of you, the recent news is very unwelcome. Thank you for your grace.

A prayer I find helpful in the midst of wanting my own way is “Holy Spirit, continue to shape me in the way of Jesus even when, or especially when, all things aren’t as I’d prefer them”. I hope that helps you as it has helped me in this season.

Pastoring through these last 18 months has been one of the greatest challenges I have experienced however I’m so thankful to be able to say that pastoring South continues to be one of the great joys of my life. Thank you for walking with us as we navigate these difficult issues.

Grace+Peace,

Alex Walton
Lead Pastor

PREVIOUS UPDATES

Dear South Family,

It has been over 18 months since COVID-19 reached our society and changed so much of our lives. This has been a season like no other and has had significant impacts—from the loss of loved ones to the effect on everyday life for our church community. Some of us have experienced and survived the virus firsthand and, in some cases, its adverse lingering health effects. It has been and continues to be difficult for all of us.

As a Jesus community, we have asked: What is the right course of action for South?

In May, we responded to the state of Colorado’s new policy by allowing masks as optional within our services. This was based on the statewide (and CDC) guidance that masks were no longer needed for those who were vaccinated and were strongly suggested for those unvaccinated. Currently, that is still our position. We continue to follow the guidance of our statewide and CDC recommendations and ask that:

If you tested positive in the 48 hours following having been in our building or at one of our events, we ask that you inform anyone with whom you were in close contact so that they might take steps that they feel are appropriate to protect themselves and others around them. It is requested that you notify our staff also ([email protected]). We may be able to help with contact information for identified close contacts, however, please know that we are unlikely to be able to help in terms of knowing with whom you may have been in close contact.

• If you are showing symptoms of COVID, refrain from entering physical community for the requisite period of time until you have tested negative.

• If you have knowingly been exposed to someone who has tested positive, then—again—refrain from physical community until you have been able to test negative.

We also recognize that within our community there are all sorts of different, and often opposing, viewpoints and we clearly see that the enemy can use this virus to cause division. But we know our God is greater than the one who is in the world. Our cause is for Christ, and we are certain that our unity in Jesus is what will bring us through these uncertain times—unity in prayer and unity in caring for one another in grace and love. Our prayer for our community is that this season will strengthen our faith and cause us to find new ways to walk with Jesus more intimately by loving our neighbors well.

We continue to ask the Holy Spirit who gives us His wisdom what actions we can take to love others well. Let’s take to heart God’s word: “Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil” (Proverbs 3:7) and, “Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought” (Romans 12:3), which both encourage us to carefully consider our own position with all humility. Philippians 2:3 goes even further: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather in humility value others above yourselves.” The Gospels of both Matthew and Mark also make clear that Jesus Himself “did not come to be served, but to serve.”Since we cannot predict the future of this virus, we can only rely on the wisdom of God to guide our discernment. We can certainly pray for His continued protection as we seek His wisdom. We do want to ask that each of you give grace to one another, knowing that we are all navigating a difficult season.

We leave you with the words of Jesus in John 14:7: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” Even in the midst of all our world is experiencing, we can experience God’s peace and know that we have a hope beyond this world.

Please feel free to reach out to any one of the elders or pastors so we can hear your heart and take a moment to pray together.

We love you and care for you,

Tom Walker (Lead Elder) and Alex Walton (Lead Pastor)

(On behalf of the Elder Board)

In light of recent changes to Covid-19 protocols, masks will no longer be required in our main Sunday morning gatherings, Kids Ministry or South Students. If you have not been vaccinated, we encourage you to still wear a mask due to risk of exposure. However, masks will no longer be required for entry. We realize this change may come with some nervousness…please know you are free to wear a mask as long as you’d like to wear one. We appreciate your patience and understanding in the midst of these changes.

Please Note: Registration is no longer required for any of our Sunday morning gatherings, including Kids Ministry.

We are excited to announce that starting April 11th we will no longer be requiring registration for our main Sunday gatherings! We will continue to monitor the amount of people in the Worship Center and provide seating in the lobby if needed. Covid protocols will still be in place, including spaced out seating and surface sanitizing between gatherings.

 **Please note that registration for our Kids Ministry is still required.**

Our Kids Ministry is reopening for Infants-5th grade during our 10:45am service beginning Jan. 17th! At this time, registration and masks are required for kids 3 years and older for the safety of other kids and our team. You can read our Re-opening COVID Policy by clicking the button below. We are thrilled to once again be able to offer in-person opportunities for kids to discover Jesus’ way and heart!

Due to recent changes in Covid protocols for Arapahoe County, we are now able to offer additional seating in our Worship Center! In light of this change, we will be moving back to our original service times, 9:00 & 10:45am, starting Jan. 3rd. Face coverings and registration will continue to be required to attend in person. If registration is full or you prefer to engage from home, our 9:00am service will be livestreamed. Thank you for your patience as we do our best to provide for the physical and spiritual health of our church family!

In order to comply with Arapahoe county’s capacity restrictions, we’ve added a third service! Join us for one of our gatherings in the Worship Center this Sunday at 8:30, 10:00 or 11:30am. Seating capacity has lowered to 50 seats in the Worship Center and 25 overflow seats in the lobby. Seating in the Worship Center will be available on a first come, first served basis. Face coverings and registration are required to attend. Each week, registration will open the Sunday before at noon.

Please note: Our Student Ministry is gathering on Sunday mornings from 10-11am, but unfortunately, our Kids Ministry is not yet meeting. In the meantime, children are welcome to attend gatherings in the Worship Center with you (be sure to help yourself to a Kids Activity Packet or two on the way in!).

Starting Sunday, July 19th at 10:00am, South will be streaming our pre-recorded service to our Kids Chapel (masks required) and our Student Center (masks recommended). Registration is required to attend. We encourage you to watch Pastor Larry’s video for details!

From Pastor Larry Boatright:

“Hey friends! We wanted to take a moment and give you a brief update on the work our ReEntry team is doing to prepare to resume gatherings on our campus. The ReEntry Team has prepared a four-stage plan for re-entry and are sending it to the Elders and Staff in the next few days to review. Our hope is to find a safe way to open our campus for on-site, limited service options in mid- to late-July. We are working diligently to take government guidelines, our community’s well-being, South’s values, surveys, logistics, and other relevant things into account.

As you can imagine, there are a wide range of emotions and needs in our community we are working hard to address. Our hope is to do our best to share not only what we are doing as we reopen, but why we are taking the specific steps we are taking.

As we move toward reopening our campus, we invite our community to come together in House ChurchesMeetupsprayer gatherings, and other small groups, while continuing to gather weekly for our online worship service. Let’s keep being the Church in our places, living in the way of Jesus with the heart of Jesus.”

Meeting at homes is going to be a great next step for us together with others in community. We’re going to dive deep into relationships and journey alongside each other this summer. Whether you’re interested in leading your own house church, participating in someone else’s or need information, this is the place to start.

Thanks so much for joining us in our efforts to stay connected with Jesus, plan and take action, as well as remain flexible in the season ahead.

House Churches Interest Form

With all the changes going on during this season, we want to make sure you’re in the know! Please take a minute to fill out our short online Notification Form to ensure we have your correct contact information and to let us know your preferred method(s) of communication. Thank you!

Fill out the Form

South Fellowship Family!

Many of you know by now that last week, President Trump officially deemed Houses of Worship (Churches, Synagogues, and Mosques) as essential organizations and pushed for them to open right away, challenging governors of each state to comply.

Some in our community might be thinking, “It’s about time! Can we meet this Sunday?” Others might be wondering, “Isn’t it too early for us to be getting back together?” Some are optimistic, some are cautious, and some may feel a mixture of emotions. All of these emotions are normal.

To be clear – the Church (the body of Christ) has always been essential. Followers of Jesus have been ministering to people throughout the centuries during some of the worst seasons humanity has experienced. The Church has often been on the frontlines; offering care when others abandoned the sick and the poor. The Church has continued to be a voice for justice and a sanctuary for the hurting. God’s people have been faithfully on their knees, asking God to heal people and meet them through every trial and tribulation. I’m so grateful.

One thing I’m especially grateful for is that South Fellowship has not stopped being the church in this season. This church has continued meeting in a variety of ways, from worshipping together online to participating in ministry gatherings via Zoom. South has also continued to significantly impact our local community through our amazing Food Bank team and our South Cares team. It’s been quite the sight to behold, seeing God’s church be the church. The Church has always been at her best during difficult seasons – and your generosity and commitment have proven that to be true at South Fellowship during this strange time. Thank you.

We are grateful for such a wonderful, loving, tight-knit church family. We miss gathering together weekly, seeing everyone’s smiling faces, sharing coffee and donuts, and worshiping our great King under the same roof. There’s nothing we’d love more than seeing all of you sooner rather than later.

At the same time, we are committed to doing our part to care for the vulnerable among us; not just at South, but in our neighborhoods and in our city. We don’t want to do anything that would cause harm to anyone, no matter how well-intentioned we might be. We are also committed to operating with wisdom and discernment, waiting on the Lord when needed, and making decisions in careful, prayerful, and thoughtful ways.

We don’t take the idea of reopening the church building lightly. We take it very seriously and with a great deal of intentionality. As you know, there are a number of recommendations and requirements for houses of worship once they reconvene. We are doing our best to parse through these and ensure we are able to comply in full. This presents some challenges, as you might imagine. We are proceeding carefully.

For these reasons, we will not have worship gatherings at our campus this Sunday. We don’t want to open up onsite gatherings until we are prepared to do what it takes to maintain a safe, sanitized space for our community. Being prepared for that will take time. We will continue doing our best to provide meaningful online worship gatherings, and will keep doing so after our facility is open as well.

Rest assured, our Elders and our staff are seeking wisdom from Jesus and trusted officials on the best way to do this. We want our return to meeting corporately to be a joyous and safe time, and we’ll do everything possible to do this in a wise, healthy way. We’ve assembled a Reentry Planning Team that is working diligently to take government guidelines, our community’s well-being, logistics, and a number of other factors into account to develop a reentry plan our leadership team feels very good about, and one that will honor all people God has placed under our care. Reentry will most likely be in stages, and we will share these stages with you in the next handful of weeks so we all know what to expect.

South, please pray for our Elders, our staff, and for each other during these unprecedented times. We live in the tension of our desire to gather and our desire to be wise. We are trusting God’s Spirit to guide us as we partner with our local, state, and national entities to be good citizens, and to live in the way of Jesus with the heart of Jesus. We will discern when the best time to reopen might be – no sooner, and no later.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me, or our elders. You can reach them at [email protected].

South Fellowship, you are loved!

Larry Boatright & the Elders of South Fellowship Church

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We’re preparing for our next steps as a church, but we need your input! Let us know your thoughts about church re-entry by filling out our survey by 5/26:

Church Re-entry Survey

Taken from The Art of Neighboring: “Most of us have experienced a dramatic change in the amount of face to face interactions we have with people at work, at school, and church. At the same time, more people are out walking in our neighborhoods than ever before. As a result, we have a unique opportunity to build connections with people that live near us that will make a big difference in their lives, and in ours. The key is learning how to do so from six feet away!”

Visit the COVID-19 Neighboring Toolkit for practical ways to reach out and love your neighbors well during COVID-19.

When and where do I stream church services online?

Live stream services this Sunday at 10:00am at southfellowship.online.church

I’m having streaming issues. What should I do?

Sunday’s service will always be available on our YouTube channel starting at 10am. We encourage you to watch it there if our streaming service is having issues!

Is my class or group meeting?

All classes/groups are no longer meeting in person, but several are gathering online via Zoom sessions. Please visit our Connect page for more info.

Is the Food Bank open?

Our Food Bank is open and operating in a modified capacity to help keep our shoppers safe. Temporary Saturday service hours are 8:00-10:30am. Please visit our page for details.

Are there any tutorials I can go through to learn more about the technology South is using?

Absolutely! Visit southfellowship.org/online for instructions, tips and videos for watching our online services and participating in Zoom sessions.

I’ve never done church at home before. How can I best engage?

We know this feels different! Take a look at our Online Worship Guide to get started.

I have a friend/family member I’d like to invite to watch with me. Can you help?

Absolutely! Online church provides a great opportunity to invite others. View our Invite Guide here.

Where can I find South updates?

You’re in the right place! We’ll be adding updates on this page as they come in. You can also sign up for our weekly enewsletter or text notifications to receive updates straight to your inbox or phone.

Where can I volunteer to help?

Sign up to volunteer or access our donation needs shopping list by visiting our South Cares page. Thank you!

Where can I share a request for help?

Please fill out this form. We will be in contact with you as soon as possible. Thanks!

Who should I contact if I need to talk?

You can contact one of our pastors Mon-Thurs from 9:00am-4:30pm. Call 303-797-1500 or text 720-730-8866.

He is still Risen!

Even though we can’t gather in person, we are still celebrating the resurrection of our Savior online together!

April 6th-10th: The Stations of the Cross – Holy Week Virtual Art Gallery

April 10th, 6:30-7:30pm: Live Online Good Friday Service

April 12th, 10:00-11:00am: Online Easter Sunday Service

Learn More

Due to COVID-19 precautions, all events at South Fellowship Church are cancelled, postponed, or online-only. For information regarding small groups, Bible studies, and similar gatherings, please contact your group leader.

Postponed Events:
  • Funeral for Marilyn Southern: new date TBD
  • Volunteer Appreciation Night At The Movies: new date TBD
Online-Only Events:

(Several ministry groups are meeting online via Zoom. Visit our Connect page for more info!)

South Fellowship Food Bank:
  • Our Food Bank is open and operating in a modified capacity to help keep our shoppers safe. Temporary Saturday service hours are 8:00-10:30am. Please visit our page for details.

Hello Church,

It is times like these that allow the church a unique opportunity to rise up, reach out and care for those around us. We know there are limitations we must work with due to the fact that physical contact is restricted, but praise God there are ways we can still connect and be there for our neighbors.

Here is a short list of some ideas my family hopes you find helpful as you think about ways to reach out into your neighborhood during this time:

Online Virtual Neighborhood Community

You might not know about this, but Nextdoor is an online tool that allows communities to connect in the virtual world and talk about all that is happening within your local community. It’s a great way for neighborhoods to connect and keep up with each other.

Apps (download in your app store)

Marco Polo – Marco Polo is a social media virtual face-to-face platform that allows you to create groups of those you want to connect with and send video messages to each other. Many within our church family are already using this to keep in touch during this time, but you can also use this for creating a neighborhood group as well.

Instagram – Instagram is another social media platform that allows you to share photos, videos and messages to friends and family.

Phone Call

This is an idea from the old days. Pick up the cell phone and give your neighbors an old fashion phone call. Texting is great, but nothing beats a personal call to see how things are going.

Drop a Note

Remember the days when people would actually write a nice card or send a note of encouragement. How about doing this for your neighbors? Take some of your time and write an encouraging word that you can drop off at the door of your neighbors. Let them know you are praying for them and they are not alone.

**If you do this, you need to wear gloves. Make sure not to go into anyone’s home and keep a safe distance from your neighbors. This might sound strange to some, but it will bring a sigh of relief to those more at risk during this time.

Yard Signs

What a great time to start getting creative and spreading words of hope and is a great way to do this? Yard Signs! Get real creative and start making yard signs with words of encouragement.

Some ideas to get the creative juice started…

  • We love our neighborhood
  • We’re in this together
  • Be still and know that I am with you – Psalm 46:10
  • Online Church Service on Sunday @ 10:00am – southfellowship.online.church
Decorate Your Yard

Easter is right around the corner and what a great way to bring some creative juice into your neighborhood than decorating your yard with Easter Decorations and bright spring colors and lights (break out those Christmas lights).

If you drive by our house you will see brightly colored eggs everywhere and signs that remind us that “He has risen.” Just get crazy with it and have fun!

Basket of Goodies

Don’t forget about our delivery people that work so hard for our neighborhoods. Our family has a basket of goodies just outside our door for them. Our sign reads: “Amazon, Fed-Ex, UPS, USPS – Please help yourself! Thank You!”

They can grab a bottle of water and choose from different Nature Valley bars.

Gift cards

A gift card is a great way to say “thank you.” Think about the people who continue to serve our neighborhoods (garbage, recycling, electric services, internet services, etc.) and giving them a gift card to a local restaurant where they can pick-up or drive through. Not only are you showing them love, but you are also helping out our local businesses.

Well, that’s our short list of ways we can be reaching out into our neighborhoods at this time. This is just a simple way to live in the way of Jesus with the heart of Jesus during this difficult time and I hope that as we engage, in some new and creative ways, we can be there to pray and support those around us.

Love you and know that you are in our prayers.

The Pennington Family

Our world is changing, and it’s ok to have emotions around this! As a church, we want to equip you with resources to help process these emotions. If you’re struggling with what you’re feeling, we encourage you to walk through the “Processing Emotions Guide” by clicking the button below.

Processing Emotions Guide

While it’s normal to be afraid or anxious during times like these, God tells us that He is ultimately in control. If you need a reminder of this today, click the button below to open an hour-long playlist of worship songs built around the themes of God’s strength, sovereignty, and our ability to trust in Him for all things.

Spotify Playlist

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” – 2 Timothy 1:7

Want to talk to one of our pastors? Give us a call (303-797-1500) or text (720-703-8866) anytime Mon-Thurs between 9:00am-4:30pm.

Hello South Fellowship Church Family,

As you might imagine, our team has been having many conversations about how we, as a faith community doing our best to live in the way of Jesus with the heart of Jesus, should respond during this season in relation to COVID-19 (coronavirus).

As a leadership team, we’ve tried to frame our plans and conversations around three things:

  1. A desire to protect the vulnerable in our community (those over 60, those with underlying conditions)
  2. A desire to care well for those might be experiencing fear or facing a lack of resources
  3. A desire to be good neighbors and citizens as a part of our local, national, and global community

This morning, Governor Polis enacted a ban on gatherings of 250 persons and up, and strongly encouraged smaller gatherings to reconsider gathering, in a community effort to contain this virus and prevent its spread.

As we seek to be good citizens and neighbors, we will comply with Governor Polis’ directive, and want you to be aware of some important things you need to know:

  • We will be moving our worship gatherings online for the next three to four weeks. This means we will stream our services at 9:00am and 10:45 am and will have no onsite gathering during that time. You can still participate in giving by giving online, through our app, or in person at our office during the week between 9:00am and 4:30pm.
  • We are working to have DVD’s available for those who cannot stream online, and are working on a plan to distribute these to those who cannot come in person to pick them up
  • We will mostly limit onsite gatherings we typically host on our campus at least through March 30th, with the possibility of extending that longer as we receive additional information. This means that the events we have planned over the next couple of weeks will be rescheduled.
  • In addition, our Food Bank team has been hard at work preparing to take additional precautions as we seek to be a help in a season like this. They will still be offering a box of food and supplies for our church family that uses the Food Bank on Sundays from 8:30am to 9:30am.
  • We know during a time like this some among us might be afraid, concerned, or facing difficulty getting food or supplies. We stand ready to help. If you need to speak with a pastor, have a prayer request, or are one of the vulnerable among us who need food or supplies, please call our office number at 303.797.1500 and leave a voicemail, and a member of our pastoral team will respond to you right away.
  • If you are a part of a volunteer team, you can expect to hear from your team lead with further department-centric details right away.

South Fellowship, we have an unprecedented opportunity to be the church during such a time as this. Please join us in praying for wisdom as to how we can all work together to be a light in the darkness, a force of hope, and a compassionate community during this time.

First, by being a non-anxious presence, deeply rooted in trust, offering and extending the peace of Christ to every person and place.

Second, by looking to the needs of others before our own. Let us not be a people who horde and worry, but instead let’s be a generous people who consider the needs of others, especially the most vulnerable.

Third, by serving those around us. This includes taking the proper preventative measures, but can also look like running errands for the elderly and immunocompromised. Let’s think creatively and boldly about the ways we love.

Our team is continuing to work on ways to care for our community, and we’ll be in touch in the coming days with additional information and resources. During the COVID-19 crisis, South Fellowship Church commits to faith over fear as we take proactive steps to care for the health of our community while creating opportunities to remain relationally connected to our church family.

South, you are fiercely loved – by your Board of Elders, your Staff, and Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. We stand with you, advocate for you, and trust God each step of the way.

You are loved –

Larry Boatright,
On behalf of our Elders and Staff