Information For Returning To In Person Worship
Dear Church Family,
These past months have been a very trying time for everyone. We would like to thank you for your patience and faithfulness during this time. We know it has been difficult not seeing one another and sharing in Christian fellowship each week. As we prepare to resume in-person worship and programming there are many steps required before we can return to any sense of normality and bring everyone back together safely.
The date for in-person worship began June 7, 2020, worship starts at 10:15am. The Bishop and Conference have consulted with medical experts, and given us helpful guidelines to follow for reopening. Be assured that the Leadership of the church is working conscientiously and diligently to ensure that everyone can return to worship together in a safe environment. However, if you do not feel comfortable coming back to in-person worship, that is perfectly alright. We will continue to offer online worship and will look forward to seeing you when you do.
As we resume in-person worship, things will look a little different for a time. It is our plan to gradually re-open certain areas of the church as things become safer. However, in the beginning we will proceed with an abundance of caution. There have been churches in our state who have suffered consequences for re-opening without taking proper precautions, and we are determined to make sure everyone is safe. We feel confident that everyone will be able to abide by these rules as an act of love towards our fellow worshipers:
- First, if you do not feel well, are coughing, have recently had a fever, or have recently been around anyone who has tested positive for Covid -19, we request that you please stay home and participate in the service online.
- Entry into the facility will be through the south door of the sanctuary only.
- Exiting will occur through the glass double doors on the north side of the building (normal entry doors).
- It is required that everyone over the age of ten wear a mask. You are encouraged to bring your own mask, but If you do not have a mask we will provide you with one. We have a number of people in the congregation that are in at-risk categories, and they will not be safe unless everyone wears a mask. We ask that you help us to carry out or commitment to welcome others by wearing a mask as an act of love towards others. It is particularly important to wear your mask during times of singing. It is clearly documented that singing spreads the virus due to the heightened risk of droplet spreading.
- Hand sanitizer will be provided, please use liberally.
- We ask that social distancing (6 feet) be observed (no handshakes, hugs, or contact) and that at the end of service everyone exit the sanctuary and facility in a timely fashion, and that socializing occur outside where proper social distancing can be maintained.
- There will be no food or beverage service at this time, so feel free to bring your own beverage.
- Clusters of chairs will be placed throughout the sanctuary for families keeping with proper social distancing.
- We will not be passing the offering plates during the service. The plates will be located on a table in the back of the sanctuary. Of course, you are encouraged to continue to give online.
- We will continue to use single serving cups for communion which will be given to individuals by gloved hospitality staff as they enter the sanctuary.
- There will be no in-person meetings or classes in the beginning, and the nursery will be closed. We plan to re-open children’s programming as soon as we can do so safely. (All children will remain seated with their family during entire worship service.)
During this opening phase we ask for your continued grace and understanding through the spirit of Christian Love. With this in mind, we have been drawn to two pieces of scripture from the apostle Paul:
Philippians 2:4 “Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others”, and
Romans 12:9, 12 “Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good…Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”
We look forward to seeing you all very soon. In the meantime, please stay safe and stay healthy.
Connect Church Leadership Team