“It’s not how fast we reopen but how well we do it that is important to me.”
Elder of Outreach and Fellowship, Barb Conn
Dear Church Family,
I’ve always said the part of our Sunday liturgy we do best is Passing the Peace—it’s an A+ every time! I’ve always bragged that our fellowship hour is one of the best attended in any church of which I am aware. In worship our sanctuary creates a space where our spirits can meet with God’s Spirit in a way I always find powerful and unique to our humble gatherings. So perhaps it goes without saying that in this COVID season the one thing I’ve missed more than anything is gathering face-to-face with you all, exchanging hugs and handshakes, smiles and greetings, and sharing our lives with one another. To that end I can’t wait for us to start coming back together and meeting on our campus once again.
However, our re-opening will take time to stage and will not happen all at once, but in phases. This reconvening on campus will take some time to prepare for, some reconfiguring of our space, some new technology to ensure we’re still reaching those who choose to stay home, and several cleaning and precautionary measures to ensure the health and safety of all who choose to join us in person.
These are the highlights of what to expect when we come back to worship in our beautiful sanctuary. We hope this will happen soon, but our timeline is not yet established. We have received from the health department 4 ½ pages of “church opening” instructions (see a summary in the above post). You are all familiar with the social distancing requirements; all must wear masks during the complete service, and we must stand, walk and sit 6 feet apart from each other in all directions. Families may sit together. Procedures are required for entering the sanctuary, including temperature checks for each person and hand sanitizer. Sunday morning worship must create a “touchless experience”, meaning do not touch ANYTHING such as a Bible, hymnal or any items in front of you. You are encouraged, of course, to bring your own Bible. There may be limits on how many can gather in our space and therefore we may have to put a “sign-up” system in place for joining us in person. Unfortunately, we will not be singing together as a congregation or hear our choir for a while. Restrooms will be open but will be limited to one person at a time. Only the sanctuary and restrooms will be available for access. All areas will be cleaned appropriately after each service and we’ll keep you posted about when we can move to other phases, such as Sunday School and Fellowship in Westminster.
In addition to all this it is my heartfelt desire to make sure everyone who has joined us via our digital platforms can continue to do so uninterrupted. This will require additional time, training, staffing and new equipment in our sanctuary. With Rachel Moranty re-joining our staff while she’s home on break from college PLUS your continued generosity in supporting our church I’m sure we’re up to the task!
All of that said, We will be needing several volunteers to help with our Sunday morning re-openings. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Jo Fusco,Team Worship.
In His tender care,