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Rocked By COVID-19 Deaths, Bright Star Still Provides Food, Masks, Trauma Services & Opens Church For VIRTUAL Funerals

Submitted by: Bright Star Church & Bright Star Community Outreach, Inc. pastorharris@brightstarcogic.com via auth.ccsend.com 

Friends and Partners of Bright Star Church Chicago & Community Outreach,

I pray that you and your loved ones are safe and healthy. Our church was one of the earliest to move to virtual services only, yet our congregation still had more than 25+ families to have at least one COVID-19 diagnoses in their home. On March 25th Collins Tinsley, a 38 year old choir member last words to me via text message were “Pastor, I have to be placed on a ventilator.” Our congregants and Collins’ family prayed three times weekly at 6AM via ZOOM for his recovery. Tragically, Collins died Friday, April 24th at 10:30pm. Countless other congregants and community members have lost loved ones over the past month.

Two hours after learning about Collins’ death, I learned that my oldest brother Charles Harris, who is hearing impaired and currently recovering at home was diagnosed with COVID-19. As you can imagine, these deaths and all of the disproportionate impacts of this pandemic on our community economically, socially, emotionally and psychologically has rocked us, but will not stop us. We are a resilient people and will continue to serve the Greater Bronzeville Community and beyond. Below you will see details of food and masks provided to seniors, trauma services made available for those facing serious anxiety, grocery and rent assistance for those laid off and now our Bright Star “HomeGoing” Virtual Funeral Services made available to those who have lost loved ones. Investing in the technology updates for this resource is one of our current focuses. Reading (and sharing) this entire email will give you and others perspective on the challenges we face, support we need and determination being exhibited.

Our motto at Bright Star Community Outreach (BSCO) is, “Strengthening Hope And Saving Lives.” That is exactly what we can continue to do with your love and support. If there was ever a time that we needed our friends, now is that time. Please also forward this to others you know. Pastor Chris Harris (PCH)

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