Elder's Blog

MDBF Church - Elders Update - Week 10

"So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. (Philippians 2:1 - 4)

Below is the latest update from the Elders.

Sunday Morning Parking Lot Gathering - Important Information

Pastor has summarized the Elders' thoughts on re-gathering in his recent Blog on the Church's website. It is critical that everyone read this, maybe multiple times, in preparation for our planned outdoor gathering this Sunday at 10am.


Thank you to all who have reached out to us with encouragement and comments and questions. We appreciate connecting with you. If you have any questions or comments about our theology or thinking during these last two months of facing a global pandemic, we ask that, in love and grace, you talk to one of the Elders. Let us strive to have "the same love" for one another as Christ had for us.

MDBF Church-Elders Update - Week 7

"I love you, O Lord, my strength.

The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,

my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,

my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold." (Psalm 18:1-2)

Below is the latest update from the Elders.

A Few More Weeks

The Governor extended the stay-at-home order for a few more weeks, so we will wait to gather again as a Church. What are you doing as you wait? We trust you are using your time to spend more time together as a family, to read more good books, to call and pray for one another, to listen to Pastor's sermon series, to be in the Word to give you strength and peace.

When We All Get Together

The Elders are talking about what Church may look like when we do gather together again. Should we all wear masks? Do Communion differently? Postpone Fellowship meals? Spread out throughout the Church using our closed-circuit TVs?

Whatever it looks like, and however different it may be, think about the bigger goal of worshiping together, seeing one another, encouraging one another, even if all this happens six feet apart.

Pastor's Latest Sunday Message

Please find time to listen as a family to Pastor Gary's May 2 Sunday message ("WHEN WE'RE HANGING ON BY OUR SPIRITUAL FINGERTIPS") posted on our website:


Giving for Ministry Needs

We encourage you to continue sending in your tithes and offerings to Church via the mail. With Federal COVID payments distributed to most families, maybe you would consider giving tithes and offerings from that unexpected payment to help MDBF ministries. Thank you for supporting our ministry during this time.

Memorial Drive Bible Fellowship

ATTN: Financial Secretary

PO Box 127

Askov, MN 55704

Youth Ministry

Pastor Andrew is holding virtual Wednesday night Youth Group with kids via Zoom. Connect with him to get involved and remember to check the FlipSide Facebook page:


MDBF Church-Elders Update - Week 5

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? (Matthew 6:25-27)

Below is the latest update from the Elders.


What a great turn-out Sunday at the Church parking lot for a short Easter Sunday gathering. Whether you were able to make it or not, remember your Church Family is out there going through the same struggles of staying home and not being able to meet together. Continue to pray for one another as we wait gathering together again.


Think back over the last week about what content you have reading. Most every article in the newspapers, Facebook or online websites has to do with COVID-19 virus. Reading too many articles on the spread of the virus, the counts of the victims, speculation of how long this will last, naturally build fear and anxiety within our spirit. If you are feeling anxious and fearful, ask yourself, "Am I reading more secular headlines than I am reading the sacred "red lines" of God's Word. The text above from Matthew 6 comes from Jesus' Sermon on the Mount. Jesus tells us we are valuable and He knows what we need. If you are having trouble with contentment during these troubling times, consider putting down the world's news and being refreshed with God's promises found in His Word.

Pastor's Latest Sunday Message

Please find time to listen as a family to Pastor Gary's current Sunday message, posted on our website: memorialdrivebiblefellowship.com under the SERMONS heading.

Annual Meeting Postponed: Financial Statements In Email

The Annual meeting will be scheduled when the Church Body can gather together. In the mean time, the Elders are operating on a provisional budget, which essentially keeps spending at the same level. That budget is not available here but is available to those of you who received this update by email. Here are some highlights:

- No salary increases

- No missionary support reduction

- General reductions in operating accounts based on this past year's spending

- Reduction in the building loan payment. 

After significantly spending down our loan balance, and with the reduction in interest rates, the Elders recommend we do a "loan modification" which could reduce our payment to around $500 a month. This would have a significant impact on our budget as we have been spending $1,250 a month. No action will be taken without Congregational approval, but we wanted to get the idea out to the Congregation now.

Also available in your email accounts are electronic copies of the 2019-2020 Financial Reports. Please contact Ron or Judee if you have any questions about the past fiscal year.

Giving for Ministry Needs

We encourage you to continue sending in your tithes and offerings to Church via the mail. Thank you for supporting our ministry even though we are separated.

Memorial Drive Bible Fellowship

ATTN: Financial Secretary

PO Box 127

Askov, MN 55704

Youth Ministry

Pastor Andrew is working on expanding his connections with kids by starting to meet via Zoom. All parents and youth should continue to check in and socialize on the Flip Side youth group Facebook page for further details on upcoming virtual meetings: www.facebook.com/groups/507261836010324

Update From Pastor Ron - April 9, 2020

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. (Romans 8:31-34)

Below is the latest update from the Elders.


Please read carefully. We are calling the church family to gather this Easter Sunday morning at 10am in the PARKING LOT of church. Details:

- Arrive by 10am sharp

- Park in a big circle in the middle of the parking lot, 6 feet from the next vehicle

- Stand as a family in front of your vehicle. See, wave and greet your church family!

- Windchills are predicted to be in the 20s so dress warmly

- We will sing a song/hymn but have no sermon or lengthy proceedings

- All will be invited to proceed as a caravan to Lyle Gray's house to do a quick drive-by birthday "party." Bring a card to drop-off, make some signs to display from your vehicle, prepare to honk and make some noise to cheer up Lyle on his 85th birthday!

- In joy, head home, being reminded 1) you are loved by God, 2) your Church family is still there, 3) you have opportunities to encourage one another each day and 4) we will gather again as family someday (and hopefully appreciate getting together more than ever)

We ask that we keep the social distancing directive given to us from our authorities. Our time together will be short, but we want to provide opportunity to legally gather to encourage one another, even through the simple act of seeing others' faces and providing a smile, wave and greeting.

Church Canceled Through May 3

By order of our Governor, large gatherings are now prohibited through May 4, causing our Sunday morning services and Youth Group activities to be canceled through at least May 3. Please continue to pray for one another diligently during this time that we cannot gather as we are accustomed to do.

Good Friday and Easter Messages

Please find time to listen to Pastor Gary's Good Friday message and Easter messages. Both are posted on our website: memorialdrivebiblefellowship.com.

Sunday Family Worship

We encourage every MDBF family to continue to listen to Pastor Gary's Sunday sermons posted online.

Annual Meeting Postponed and Provisional Church Budget in Place

The Annual meeting is postponed and will be rescheduled. One order of business that cannot be completed is to vote on the new church budget. The Elders are operating on a provisional budget, which essentially keeps spending at the same level (no salary increases, no missionary support reduction, etc.).

Next week we plan to attach electronic copies of the 2019-2020 Financial Reports and 2020-2021 Proposed Church Budget. Stay tuned for those.

Giving for Ministry Needs

Expenses are still being paid and missionaries still are blessed by our Church's support, so we encourage you to continue sending in your tithes and offerings to Church via the mail:

Memorial Drive Bible Fellowship

ATTN: Financial Secretary

PO Box 127

Askov, MN 55704

Youth Ministry

Pastor Andrew is committed to connecting with kids individually during this time of separation. All parents and youth should continue to check in and socialize on the Flip Side youth group Facebook page: www.facebook.com/groups/507261836010324/

Words of Comfort

Christ is risen from the dead, conquering death and paying the debt of our sins that we could not pay! 1 Corinthians 15:1-8 should provide us comfort if we have put our trust in Jesus:

Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.

For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me.


Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!

Below is the latest update from the Elders.

Easter at Home?

This Sunday is Palm Sunday and church will once again be canceled. There is also a strong probability that MDBF families will be celebrating Easter at home, and not together. Some might be asking: if we are obeying the Government guidelines, are we disobeying Hebrews 10:24-25?

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. (ESV)

The word "neglecting" is also translated "forsaking" or "abandoning." We are in no way "leaving the church helpless" (another definition) during this time. We are not giving up on the church or minimizing the command to gather together. During this time that we are following the guidelines put forward by the governing authorities in order to protect others, we are encouraging you to connect with one another, listen to the same sermons as one another and to help one another. Know that the Elders are meeting weekly to try to shepherd from a distance and that we are praying for you and the needs that we know of.

When restrictions are lifted, we trust that the entire Congregation will attend Church gatherings will more zeal and more faithfully than ever before, knowing our command to gather and knowing the benefit of having the freedom to gather.

Sunday Family Worship

We are pleased to hear that many MDBF families are listening to Pastor Gary's sermons posted online: (memorialdrivebiblefellowship.com). The Elders desire that all families listen to these sermons on Sunday morning as part of your family worship time, so that we are still being fed the same Word.

Congregational Care

Please don't hesitate to contact an Elder if you or someone else around you has a need. Continue to contact one another and "encourage one another." Pray for church members who have lost income, who feel anxious or are feeling "trapped" by the travel restrictions. Pray for Pastor Gary and Pastor Andrew who continue to find ways to minister from a distance.

Financial Update

Thank you to everyone who sent in a tithe/offering check over the last couple weeks. Unofficially, over $5,600 came in by the end of our fiscal year. The bills are paid, missionaries are being supported, our staff is still employed and we have money in the bank! Please continue to remember that operations and ministry continues even if we don't meet on Sundays.

Youth Ministry

Pastor Andrew is committed to connecting with kids individually during this time of separation. All parents and youth should continue to check in and socialize on the Flip Side youth group Facebook page at www.facebook.com/groups/507261836010324/

Ron's Recommended Resources

AFTER you listen to Pastor Gary's weekly sermon, if you have internet access, you may want to avail yourselves to these teaching resources for encouragement during this time of trials. These can take the place of "Sunday School" or family devotions.

- John Piper: None of our Misery is Meaningless (youtube.com)

- Alistair Begg: Trusting God in the Dark (Youtube.com)

- David Platt: Peace in the Middle of a Pandemic (youtube.com)

- John MacArthur: The Promise of Peace in a Worried World (youtube.com)

- Max Lucado: Anxious for Nothing (christianbook.com)

- Lee Strobel: Trusting God in Worrisome Times Pt 1 (youtube.com)

- Lee Strobel: Trusting God in Worrisome Times Pt 2 (youtube.com)

- Ken Ham: Responding to COVID-19 from a Christian Worldview (youtube.com)

For those who enjoy music to help lift their spirits, consider listening to these songs:

- Meredith Andrews: Not for a Moment (youtube.com)

- Casting Crows: Praise You in this Storm (youtube.com)

- Anthem Lights: How Great Thous Art (youtube.com)

- I am They: My Feet are on the Rock (youtube.com)

Words of Comfort

If fear is rising within you, take comfort in the words of Philippians 4:6-7

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

From "Pastor Ron": First Coronavirus Notes

In view of the current COVID-19 crisis, and in response to government guidelines, our elders have cancelled all church events through April 10th.

Additional comments are contained below.

From Ron Mossberg, Elder, On Cancellation of Large Group Activities Due to COVID-19:

Romans 13:1-3 is a key Scripture that provides some basis for a Christian's response to Government:
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval. (ESV)
In our present situation, our Government officials are providing guidelines for limiting large gatherings to help stop the spread of the virus. At face value their statements indicate concern for the health of all citizens. We believe they are not targeting churches and what they are asking does not cause us to violate our faith.
Also, if we love one another we will take measures to not put others at risk. In reviewing what other solid biblical churches are doing, we find a consensus that closing for a time and heading the Government's guidelines is prudent and not contrary to Scripture.
For a practical perspective from a like-minded Congregation, Capital Hill Baptist Church, please follow this link and listen to the analysis from Pastor Mark Dever.

Congregational Care
Now is a critical time for us as a Church to love one another in word and deed. The early Church provided a great model of how we should live, as seen in Acts chapter 4:

Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. (ESV)
If anyone is impacted by financial hardship; If anyone needs physical assistance; if anyone has food or material needs; if anyone needs someone to go shopping for them; whatever need you have please contact an Elder. We will facilitate matching your need with a resource. On the flip side, if anyone is able to help another or provide material goods to the Body, please let us know what you have to offer. This can be a time where we shine the love of Christ to one another.
Remember to reach out to one another with phone calls (an often overlooked feature of our cell phones) and check in with one another to help stay connected, even while we are apart.

Giving to Ministry
Our desire is to meet our obligations to pay our staff, support our missionaries and have financial resources to continue our ministries as we move into the next fiscal year. As you are financially able, we ask that you consider sending in your tithes and offerings to Church before the end of the month. You may write checks or use online Bill Pay to send your giving to the following address:
Memorial Drive Bible Fellowship
ATTN: Financial Secretary
PO Box 127
Askov, MN 55704

Alternate Sunday Activities
Even though there are no Church services the next two weeks, we greatly encourage your family to set apart (make holy) Sunday morning to the Lord and to the nourishment of your faith. Ideas to consider: Prayer, Bible reading, Right Now Media lesson, YouTube sermons, streaming Church service, listen to hymns and worship songs. Also consider inviting a nearby family from Church to join you for family worship, encouragement and a meal. Also remember the restorative health benefits of playing outside, going for a walk, taking a nap, playing games as a family and the like.

The Elders will be meeting together weekly to continue to evaluate, discuss and determine future plans. We will do our best to keep the Congregation informed in a timely manner.

Feed My Sheep (This section was added by Pastor Gary once the decision to cancel was made)
We will be cancelling our April distribution for two reasons. With so many products touched by so many hands shipped from all over, it would be entirely possible to introduce COVID-19 to our area. We must do everything we can to prevent this.
Further, t would be terribly dishonoring to God and harmful to the reputation of the fellowship to disregard the counsel of those in leadership over whether it resulted in a spread of the virus or not.

Contact Info
If you have any needs for assistance, any concerns or fears, any prayer requests, please contact an Elder or the Church Office at mdbf.askov@gmail.com.