Forest Lake Talks

A Message from Ellen 6-5-24

June 5, 2024

June 5, 2025

Dear Friends,

Every May, the Session requires a written report from every Ministry and the Board of Deacons outlining what they have done in the past year to prevent, to prepare, and to respond in the case of an emergency. Safety planning seems just theoretical right up until something happens. Several weeks ago, a member fell and EMS had to be called. Our congregation responded beautifully. One member called EMS and stayed outside to guide the paramedics. Another member got the AED, in case it was needed (luckily it was not), and the ushers made sure to tend to the member until EMS arrived. It is important to think ahead of time about how to respond to emergencies.

Inside this newsletter you will find a summary of all the work that was reported to The Session in May. I am grateful for the work of all the Ministries, and I think that you might find some things on this list that you’d like to do yourself. And I think you will be grateful for some things that FLPC does that you may not have thought about. For example, we now have two AEDs (Automated External Defibrillator) to use in case of a heart attack. Do you know where they are in the building? We have offered three opportunities in the last several months on how to protect yourself and your children online. Do you know how to protect yourself? Your children? We have and will continue to train ushers in how to evacuate the building. Do you know where to go to be reunited with your family or friends if the building is evacuated? Our reunification site is across North Trenholm Rd. in the parking lot of North Trenholm Baptist Church. From making sure the fire extinguishers and first aid kits are up to date to ensuring that all staff and volunteers, who work with children and youth, have passed background checks, FLPC is committed to doing our best to prevent harm, or when that is not possible, respond quickly and well in an emergency.

It is not convenient to think this way. It would be easier not to run background checks on staff and volunteers. It would be easier just to unlock all the doors on a Sunday morning and leave them unlocked. But the cost of a child being abused, or of allowing a person who means harm to get into the building without us knowing, is higher than I am willing to pay. So, I encourage you to read the list of what the leadership of our congregation has done to plan for our safety. Thank them for their diligence. And think for yourself how to guard against harm and hurt.

See you in worship!

Ellen F. Skidmore

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