July 13th, 2020
We hope this message finds you well. Below you will find a list of interim changes and guidelines for our Sunday morning worship services. We have been blessed to be able to serve you by working through all of the things you will see below in preparation to gather together and worship our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Please know that each of these items were thoughtfully and lovingly considered with the intent to prepare a space that is clean, safe and ready for you to come back to and enjoy time in worship and fellowship. Our desire is that we would love each other well by loving our neighbors as ourselves.
Please be sure to read the information below before coming to an in-person service. We will resume in-person services on Sunday July 19th. For those of you who are not yet comfortable or able to attend in person, the sermon will still be made available to you via livestream during the service time and posted afterwards for those who miss the livestream.
After careful consideration, it is our position that in order to resume corporate worship safely, all those who are able will be required to wear protective face masks. This is in accordance with the CDC recommendations as well as the guidance of our elected officials. We believe this is the best way to love and care for our neighbors as ourselves. In addition we understand that not everyone is able to wear a mask, such as small children, etc. In these cases we ask that those who are unmasked refrain from close contact with others during worship due to the risk of respiratory droplet projection. As the guidance from our elected officials changes on this topic, we will adjust as well.
We will not be singing corporately in worship services initially upon return to worship together. This was not an easy decision to come to but some research shows that singing can pose an increased risk of respiratory droplet projection. In the meantime, we will be reciting psalms together as an expression of worship.
We will have hand sanitizer stations set up in strategic locations. Please use it upon entry, prior to receiving communion elements, and as many times as you need to.
We will continue to have the
facility cleaned weekly by a service. We will also be using sanitizing wipes to
spot check high touch areas such as door handles and the top of the backs of
Wellness Checks (Self and Family)
We want to ensure a safe environment for everyone and to avoid any unnecessary risks for anyone in attendance who may be severely affected if exposed to COVID-19. To this end, we are asking that everyone planning to attend in person worship services perform a self (and family if appropriate) wellness check. If you or anyone in your household currently has or has had in the past 2-3 days any new symptom that is known to be associated with COVID-19 (fever, cough, runny nose, sore/scratchy throat, loss of taste/smell, headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, body aches) please stay home and plan to participate in worship virtually. Any of these symptoms have been known to be associated, either alone or coupled with others, with COVID-19; we ask that you err on the side of caution and avoid coming to the service on Sunday. If you can confidently attribute symptoms to seasonal allergies or a non-communicable illness, please use discretion on whether or not to attend services in person.
Sunday School and Nursery
Sunday school and Nursery ministries will be temporarily suspended. In the meantime, we are encouraging families to worship together in the service. Parents: we love you and your little ones! We are excited to hear their voices and rustlings while we worship together. We recognize that there are going to be challenges for you as we navigate this season and we are committed to showing grace in all circumstances. We ask that you do your best to keep your little ones close by before, during and after the service to ensure that we are loving our neighbors as ourselves while maintaining our social distance.
We will be blocking off pews, spreading out chairs and adding seating to the foyer in order to promote social distancing for our in person services. Please plan to sit with your family or those with whom you have been socializing during quarantine. We will not be reserving or assigning seats.
Fellowship Before/After Service
Please ensure that you are taking precautions to maintain appropriate social distance while enjoying fellowship before and after the service. It is our recommendation that this take place outside of the building.
We continue to encourage online giving. Additionally, we will be setting up a basket in the back of the sanctuary for you to drop your offering on your way to your seat. This will be collected and secured shortly after the start of the service.
We will be continuing to serve the Lord’s Supper during worship. However, the way in which the elements will be received is going to be slightly changed. We will have masked, hand washed and gloved ushers passing the elements to you as you pass by a table. Other ushers will be dismissing pews/seats to collect elements before going back to your seat. Once everyone has been served, we will take the elements together. This method is going to be used to limit the number of hands touching the elements prior to you receiving them.
Other Temporary Changes or Restrictions
-Drinking fountains will be disconnected
-The Fellowship Hall and upstairs areas of the west wing will remain closed
-The Sunday school hallway will remain closed; access will be maintained to the restrooms and nursing mothers room.
-Coffee bar will be temporarily discontinued