Brighton church rolling the dice with in-person services

A reader contacted me a few days ago about FloodGate Church in Brighton, located on Old U.S. 23, south of Hyne Road, holding regular, in-person services in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic and the shutdown of everything in Michigan not deemed “essential.”

Not only is FloodGate holding services this Sunday — Easter Sunday — it is also holding a “non-touch” Easter egg hunt for kids afterward.

While churches are exempted in Michigan’s COVID-19 Stay Home, Stay Safe shutdown, that doesn’t mean they have to hold in-person services; they can also choose to stream services, or not hold services at all.

My church-going friends have been attending streamed services in the safety of their homes. Their churches are among the larger, more well-known in the community. Since I hadn’t heard of FloodGate before, I figured it might be a new church, or one that lacked the resources and know-how to stream services.

But a visit to the church website shows that not only is it technologically adept, but streaming services is a regular thing.

So, why take a chance during this global pandemic?

FloodGate’s Pastor Bill Bolin — who subscribes to a theory that the Joe Biden campaign rally in Detroitl on March 9 brought COVID-19 to Michigan — appears to like playing the odds: “What I know is that if you live in Livingston County, you are really safe,” Bolin wrote on Facebook. “Right now, your chance of contracting COVID-19 in Livingston County is 1 in 0.05 percent, and your chance of dying from the disease here is 0.001 percent. I realize that the statistical data changes daily. My answer to that is Livingston County has remained steady for weeks, even with new testing for evidence of infections.”

“It doesn’t take great faith to realize that the odds are in your favor even if you followed no safety standards.”

Now, I don’t know if Bolin’s statistical analysis is accurate. What I do know is that according to the Livingston County Health Department, as of this writing, we currently have 174 cases of COVID-19, 29 hospitalizations, and two deaths. For my comfort, those are 174 cases, 29 hospitalizations and two deaths too many to justify rolling the dice on in-person Sunday services.

The best precaution to keep people safe is to not gather them together under any circumstances. Bolin acknowledges that: “You can tune in at www.floodgatechurch.com/live and watch FloodGate live with our online audience. This also applies to those who are concerned about being contaminated. It is not a lack of faith to stay home.”

I will repeat Bolin’s words: “It is not a lack of faith to stay home.”

So, just stay home.

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2 Comments

  1. For churchgoers, in person services are an essential part of life. For those who express a sincere relationship and strong faith in the divine protection of God, inside the walls of the church is a safehaven , possibly the safest place to be. A true christian lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God, fearing nothing. His word says that if you live properly, no plague will come near your dwelling place…as well as….. to live is Christ and to die is gain..A true christian wins regardless. In respect for others who choose to attend live services, following safe guidelines and social distancing is a good practice but standing with the ONE who created you in my opinion is the wisest, safest choice possible…

    Respectfully

    James Stidham

  2. I think this pastor needs to stop thinking he an epidemiologist, and just going on faith that he or his congregation are not infected. Poor reasoning, dog whistling to a sector of LC, and seems to me to be a money grab. But hey, do what you want. Don’t whine if you get sick.

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