By Zlatko Musija.
God organized Church for service – to be a loving and compassionate family of God that strengthens its members and helps them bring hope to the suffering world. iCOR, the intergenerational church of refuge, is about Church becoming a safe, community-oriented, spiritual environment for people of all ages and cultures.
How does that work in a time of lockdown – at a time when church buildings are closed, families are confined in each other’s presence, others are totally alone, and domestic abuse is on the rise? In fact, every time of crisis shows who we really are. Are we “brothers” and “sisters” to each other now when we really need support? Are we “a community that not only loves and cares for its own, but also extends its arms beyond the boundaries of the church to offer compassionate help to a broken world”?
Instead of becoming more alienated from each other during lockdown, this time is an opportunity to strengthen our relationships with God and with each other. This is an opportunity to learn how to care for and connect with the people of different generations! This is an opportunity to use the spiritual gifts of everybody, especially young people who tend to be more internet and social media savvy! This an opportunity to come out of this crisis stronger and more connected than ever before!
Working together across several ministries and European territories, the iCOR team has developed a series of helpful guides about living Church of Refuge values in lockdown. They provide practical tips on what individuals and families can do in each area, along with links to sites with helpful information. This booklet is just a preliminary thought on how to be a family of God during the time of self-isolation. We would like to hear your ideas and your local stories about being a Church of Refuge in lockdown, so send your insights to firstname.lastname@example.org.
 Joseph H. Hellerman, When the Church Was a Family: Recapturing Jesus’ Vision for Authentic Christian Community(Nasville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2009), 217.