The Coronavirus continues to spread across the country, and around the world. We have all been affected in a variety of ways, and even if we have escaped illness our lives have been profoundly changed.
At London Seminary, we are no longer able to give lectures in the usual way. For the remaining weeks of term, all teaching is carried out remotely over the ZOOM platform. We are grateful for this technology which works extremely well. The user experience is almost like being in the same room. And yet, we are not all in the same room. There is no opportunity for worship together before lectures. The conversation and personal engagements around the Seminary are no more. While questions and discussion are possible via the online platform, these conversations cannot be continued over coffee or over lunch with the lecturer or fellow students.
It is at times like this, even as we see the potential of technology, that we are reminded of the irreplaceable value of face-to-face teaching. Just as we miss being at church in person on Sundays, so we miss being together at Seminary.
Meanwhile, there are additional pressures for students and families who live on site. The Seminary community is itself a “family.” The seven student families who live here are a tight-knit group, who help and serve one another. The children play together, and childcare responsibilities are shared. The single students who live on site are included in family mealtimes and social occasions. But now we are forced into isolation and “social distancing”. This creates new pressures on all who live here.
Please do pray for us. In particular pray that none of the single students living on the top floor would suffer the symptoms of the virus. If they do, then all who live there will be forced into isolation which will be very challenging. Pray for the families, who are struggling to manage their children in confined quarters, and seeking to be wise and careful about social interaction.
None of us knows what the coming weeks and months will bring. But we pray that the Lord will work out His good purposes not only for the Seminary, but for cause of His Kingdom in the nation and the wider world.