Sunday March 17 Cancellation

  Greetings Church Family,

 
I hope this message finds you well and blessed in the Lord.  
 
This last Wednesday night I saw a Facebook post sent out from the official MCAS Iwakuni Facebook page regarding a recently discovered 1940’s era ordinance that Japan Ground Self Defense Force explosive ordinance experts will be defusing this Sunday, March 17.  
 
As a safety precaution, the commanding officer of Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni has “strongly advised” personnel to shelter in place if they fall within a 2.1 kilometer radius of the explosive ordinance during the hours of 0800-1300 or until the all clear is received from Iwakuni City officials.  
 
Calvary Chapel Iwakuni does fall within the 2.1 kilometer radius of the explosive ordinance.  And while Calvary Chapel Iwakuni is a separate entity outside the jurisdiction of MCAS Iwakuni and the base’s commanding officer, we understand that many of the members that make up this body do fall under the jurisdiction and authority of the base commanding officer.  
 
The Scriptures exhort us to honor and respect the human authorities that have been placed over us, to submit to and obey them, and that they have been placed in such a position by God. (Romans 13:1-7, Titus 3:1-2, 1 Peter 2:13-14)
 
As such, I have a difficult time encouraging people to come to worship service this Sunday morning when it would cause people to go against the “strong advisement” of the authority that has been put in place by God.  
 
Also, as a pastor, one of my responsibilities is to care for and protect the flock that God has entrusted to my care.  As such, it is important that I don’t encourage the flock to engage in activity that could be potentially harmful to them.  I am not an explosive ordinance expert.  I do not know the degree to which safety precautions should be made.  But the people who counseled the commanding officer to make his strong advisement are.  And they feel that the church is within the area that could be impacted should defusing the explosive fail.  
 
For these reasons; for the overall safety of the flock, and for the importance of following, honoring, obeying, and submitting to the authority figure that many fall under, I have decided to CANCEL Sunday morning services this Sunday, March 17th.  
 
However, I do not want you to feel that you do not have an option to worship the Lord and to hear from the Lord this Sunday morning.  I have spoken with my pastor down in Okinawa, Pastor Rick Barnett of Calvary Chapel Okinawa, and they will be streaming their two Sunday morning services.  They have a 0830 service as well as a 1030 service.  You can click on the following link and it will take you to their streaming page where you can engage in worship with other brothers and sisters in Christ from the safety of your own homes.  
 
 
We will pick up our study through the book of 1 Corinthians chapter 11 the following Sunday, March 24th Lord willing.  Also our children’s ministry classes will simply postpone their lessons planned for March 17th to the following weekend, March 24th.  
 
I hope that you will understand and respect the decision that has been made.  It was a decision that was made with much prayer and counsel.  I hope you will take advantage of the opportunity to worship with our brothers and sisters in Okinawa and that you will all have a safe and enjoyable Sunday.  Please pray for those who will be defusing the explosive ordinance, that they will be successful and no harm will befall any engaged in this operation.  Should you have any questions about the decision that was made feel free to email me at glenn@calvaryiwakuni.com or call me at 090-5923-5939.  May God bless you and yours!
 
In Christ,
Pastor Glenn