As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, the following is meant to be a guiding reference for how we, Canvas Church, wish to move forward.
We believe Jesus summarized the Christian life with two commands: Love God and love your neighbour (Matthew 22:36-40). In everything we do as a church during this pandemic, we want to ask, “Does this reflect a love for God and a love for my neighbour?”
We understand that these are unique times and every person is seeking to understand the best way forward. Disagreements on practice are inevitable. However, we will commit ourselves to approaching each other “…with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Ephesians 4:2-3). We will not prioritize ourselves at the expense of others but will follow the apostle Paul’s example in seeking God’s glory and others’ salvation above our own personal advantage (1 Corinthians 10:23-33).
We will attempt to safely meet in person, as permitted, understanding that this is an important calling for the church (Hebrews 10:24-25; Acts 2:46). However, we are also committed to using technology that allows us to fellowship online for a temporary period if wisdom leads us to this as the safest option.
We will obey the governing authorities over us (Romans 13:1-7; 1 Peter 2:13-17). This means we will take seriously the recommendations of the medical community as we seek to act with wisdom and employ the most current safety measures. In grey areas of personal conscience, we want to “go the second mile” (Matthew 5:41) by thinking of others’ well-being beyond the minimum requirements asked of us.
We want our actions and attitudes as a church to accurately reflect Jesus, who said, “Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16). We understand that our community and the world is watching our response to this pandemic, and we are representing Jesus with our actions and our attitudes. As a church that is called to engage our community, we want everything we do to build, not burn, bridges towards this goal.
We believe that the above approach is reflective of the four core values of Canvas:
The following practices are what Canvas Oak Bay will do to provide a safe worship experience for everyone at our Sunday in-person gatherings.