Pastor Louie Giglio shares how his Atlanta church is loving its neighbors during COVID-19
Liberty University’s online Convocation Friday morning featured Passion City Church Pastor Louie Giglio from Atlanta who encouraged students to allow God to carry all their burdens during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Giglio said his church has been thriving despite having to move to an online streaming format for services. During the COVID-19 pandemic, they have focused intently on serving the people who are struggling during this season of uncertainty.
“We have found that this is what the Church is all about,” Giglio said.
His church was originally a Home Depot warehouse building, so the location has opened the door to incredible opportunities to serve.
“We’re centrally located, we’re in the city, and are right off the interstate,” Giglio said. “We are having an extraordinary opportunity to engage the world with the Gospel. (It’s) unlike anything we’ve ever dreamed of.”
Passion City is distributing thousands of meals to hospital workers as well as distributing masks and offering COVID-19 testing from a clinic set up in the church’s parking lot.
“We are looking for opportunities to do what Jesus said which is, ‘love your neighbor as yourself.’ This is the greatest commandment,’” Giglio said. “We’re doing that and fortunately we have a great setup for it.”
“We want to be a lighthouse right now,” he added. “When the lights go out, that is when the Church needs to be bright.”
Passion City has a week set aside every summer called Love Atlanta, where they serve the community through various community service events. Giglio said that they moved this event up six weeks ago when the pandemic first hit in an effort to significantly serve Atlanta at a time when the city needed it most.
“The thing about times like these is they help you understand how good your transmission is and what kind of linkage you have in your organization,” Giglio said. “The Church is meant to flex and flow.”
Giglio explained that he is not able to dictate the flow but, as Passion City’s pastor, he is able to steer how the church navigates through the different storms of life.
“If leaders are leading through what they read in the newspaper then they are sunk,” he said. “A lot of what you read in the newspaper is not true and you are already six cabooses off the back of the train if you are getting your information off the news.”
He said that Passion City has a responsibility as one of the largest weekly gatherings in Atlanta to follow safety precautions in an attempt to lessen the potential spread of COVID-19, and he added that this time in life is an opportunity to hand more of our troubles to the Lord.
“Faith sometimes cripples us from letting reason and wisdom lead us,” Giglio said. “I would encourage anyone struggling with fear or worry to name it and then let him take it. If you’re at the end of your rope, free fall into grace.”
Giglio said there is nothing more powerful than when faith becomes sight, which happens when we let go of the rope and let God take over.