Updated May 27
As YWAM Tyler continues to navigate the changes brought about by COVID-19, we are excited to see the creative ways that ministry has continued to move forward. Our staff have made tremendous use of video-conferencing technology to keep us connected and to continue discipleship classes online. Along with many other initiatives, this year has been full of purpose and engagement with the world we are called to reach.
As Texas—and the nation—continues to open up again, we will be conducting our summer training schools beginning June 28. We will be running our regular Discipleship Training School (DTS), Family DTS, and School of Evangelism (SOE). In addition, our missionary training program for teens, SST, will run July 12 - 26. These training opportunities can be looked at in more details here:
In order to run our training programs and also maintain the health of staff and students, we continue to work with the guidelines and recommendations from our state and local health authorities. YWAM Tyler has a team dedicated to monitoring our specific areas of risk from COVID-19, and implementing appropriate measures. These measures include the common protocols of physical distancing, hand washing, and sanitizing, as well as quarantining as needed for those coming from higher risk locations.
Please pray with us for our nation and world, that God's purposes will prevail as we continue to fulfill Jesus command to "Go into all the world and make disciples."
Smith County Issues “Stay at Home” Order
Smith County Judge Nathaniel Moran issued a two-week “Stay at Home” Order for all Smith County residents on Friday, March 27, 2020.
The order is an amendment to Smith County’s “Declaration of Local Disaster Due to Public Health Emergency for Smith County, Texas,” signed by Judge Moran on March 16, and ratified by the Smith County Commissioners Court on March 17.
“The purpose of this order is to further protect the health, safety and welfare of our Smith County community,” Judge Moran said. It is also to ensure that – as a community – we take affirmative steps to support our local health care providers and institutions by mitigating any spikes in COVID-19 patient numbers.”
The “Stay at Home Order” takes effect at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, March 27, 2020, and will continue through 11:59 p.m. on Friday, April 10, 2020, unless otherwise extended or terminated by further order of Judge Moran.
Judge Moran has been working daily with local public health and emergency management officials to make decisions to best suit the county as a whole. He believes the order has become necessary to combat community spread and the growing number of Smith County residents who have tested positive for COVID-19. The joint decision for the “Stay at Home Order” was made by members of the medical field, public health authority, city officials and emergency management professionals.
“By signing this order, I do recognize that it will cause hardships to many in the community – economic and otherwise,” Judge Moran said. “I am burdened by this fact. I am also acutely aware that governments must take care not to over-reach in times of crisis. Liberty is too precious a commodity, and governments should seek to uphold liberty, not restrain it. Nevertheless, the health of this community compels me to act today.”
Because of the risk of the rapid spread of the virus through person-to-person contact, and the need to protect the most vulnerable members of the community, the “Stay at Home” Order requires all individuals anywhere in Smith County to stay at home – except to conduct certain essential activities, services and work.
This “Stay at Home” Order still allows for essential activities, businesses and services to continue. Citizens are encouraged to consult the specific language of the order for detailed exceptions. For definitions or clarifications on anything in Judge Moran’s “Stay at Home” Order, please visit www.smith-county.com and click the red banner at the top of the page.
“Even with this order in place, the primary defense to the spread of COVID-19 remains the individual decisions that we each make on a minute-to-minute basis,” Judge Moran said. “I cannot regulate common sense and cannot ensure good-decision making by every citizen in this county at every moment. That is left to each of us individually. So, self-regulate.”
The order states that if a person residing in Smith County is being tested or has tested positive for COVID-19, or is under investigation for possibly having COVID-19, that person plus all other individuals living at the same address, are ordered to isolate at home. These people shall not go to work, school or any other community function until they have tested negative or is released back to work by a medical doctor or the local public health authority.
People who are sick or who are at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19 are urged to stay in their residence to the extent possible, except as necessary to seek medical care.
Social distancing requirements means maintaining at least six feet of physical distancing from other individuals, washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds as frequently as possible or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, covering coughs or sneezes (into the sleeve or elbow--not hands), regularly cleaning high-touch surfaces, and not shaking hands.
Smith County residents may leave their residence only to perform these "Essential Activities."
People may leave their residence to work for or obtain services at any “health care operations,” such as hospitals, clinics, dentists, pharmacies, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology companies, other health care facilities, health care suppliers, home health care services providers, mental health providers, or any related and/or ancillary health care services. It also includes veterinary care and all health care services provided to animals. "Health care operations" does not include fitness and exercise gyms and similar facilities.
People may leave their residence to provide any services or perform any work necessary to the operations and maintenance of “Critical Infrastructure,” as more particularly identified by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency. There are 16 critical infrastructure sectors, which can be found here: https://www.cisa.gov/
Nothing in the “Stay at Home Order” shall prohibit the activities of any first responder, emergency management personnel, emergency dispatcher, detention officer, court personnel, or law enforcement personnel. It also does not prohibit any individual from performing or accessing “Essential Governmental Functions,” as determined by the governmental entity performing those functions. Each governmental entity shall identify and designate appropriate employees or contractors to continue providing and carrying out essential functions, and all shall be performed in compliance with social distancing.
Nothing in the order restricts the activities of any public, private, or charter school, or any homeschool association, including without limitation the delivery or pick-up of meals, supplies, or homework assignments.
For the purposes of this Amended Order, the term "Essential Businesses” means:
• Health care operations.
“Essential travel” includes travel for any of the following purposes:
• Any travel related to the provision of or access to essential activities, essential governmental functions, essential businesses or minimum basic operations.
Non-essential businesses shall shut down except for maintaining minimum basic operations. Essential businesses and locked businesses exempted from shut-down are encouraged to determine staff who are essential to operations and to send non-essential staff home.
Failure to comply with any of the provisions of Smith County’s “Stay at Home” Order constitutes an imminent threat to public health. The penalty for violating the Order, in accordance with Texas Government Code, Section 418.173, shall be a fine of no more than $1,000, or confinement in the county jail for a term up to 180 days, or both. Each day a violation occurs is a separate and distinct violation. This Amended Order also authorizes licensed peace officer with local, county or state jurisdiction to enforce the provisions of this order.
“Even with this order, many necessary activities of daily living and many functions of life will still continue,” Judge Moran said. “In each of those circumstances, individual decision making is crucial if this community truly wants to stop the spread of COVID-19. Wash your hands frequently, keep your physical distance, watch for signs of infections and call ahead to your doctor before you go seek treatment.”
Youth With A Mission (YWAM) Tyler is monitoring developments of the global Coronavirus outbreak, and is working with our own trained medical staff, as well as, local health professionals to respond.
YWAM Tyler is taking steps to stay informed and implement necessary measures. These steps include staying in close communication with our staff and teams that are traveling, have been traveling, and are planning to travel in the near future. High risk locations are being avoided, and returning personnel are being carefully monitored. To maintain a healthy campus we have assembled a team to ensure that our staff, students, and visitors are fully informed and trained concerning best practices to minimize risk. Recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control are being followed.
We will continue to stay up to date with this developing situation, and respond as is required by changing circumstances.
YWAM Tyler is committed to walk in faith and wisdom rather than fear. We have a mission to accomplish even in the midst of this difficult time. We will continue to pray for those who are suffering and who have suffered loss.
Please reach out to us if you have any questions.
Founder and Director, YWAM Tyler
INSPIRE and Arise and Shine Event
In compliance with recommendations from health officials to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus, YWAM Tyler will be canceling our Inspire and Arise & Shine event scheduled for April 1st through 4th.
As the global situation regarding the COVID-19 virus continues to unfold, and with an anticipated attendance of over one thousand participants for the Inspire event, we will be complying with safety and preventative measures as recommended by our governing experts. YWAM Tyler will continue to monitor the recommendations of our local and national officials and experts in the medical community in order to aid in the prevention of the virus spread.
Even though the Arise & Shine and Inspire event has been canceled this April, the vision and heart behind it is very much alive. In every crisis, there is a great opportunity for God to work in extraordinary ways on the earth, as people draw near to Him. He is still building His Church and not even the gates of hell, nor any kind of virus, can prevail against it. Let’s pray for healing, revival, multiplication of the gospel message, help to those in need, and His hope to be heralded in the highways and by-ways. Jesus is still winning in the nations.
Quarter 2 Training Schools
Our training schools beginning March 29 have been moved to coincide with our June and October school schedules. Please visit our training school calendar for more information.