In an effort to limit the spread of COVID-19, we are respectfully requesting congregation members voluntarily follow safe social distancing practices.
The online worship resources on the website; Facebook at 9 am each Sunday; and paper copies of the sermons will continue to be provided each week.
If you are sick, please stay home and participate using the online worship resources.
If you have concerns about your own health or vulnerability, we encourage you to participate using the online worship resources.
Minimize close physical contact with those outside of your household. Please refrain from shaking hands and giving hugs.
A face mask is encouraged but not mandatory.
Maintain a 6-foot distance with others whenever possible.
Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, utilize hand sanitizer and avoid touching your face.
We are instituting a number of new practices. Your patience, understanding and willingness to adjust are greatly appreciated.
In-person worship - one worship time at 9 am on Sunday.
Preparations before worship
Attendance will be limited to recommended guidelines of 25% of our seating capacity (about 50 people) with seating in every other pew so that we can maintain social distance.
Signage will be posted in the building reminding people to social distance.
All hymnals, Bibles, kid activity bags, and other miscellaneous resources have been removed from the worship space to facilitate cleaning and sanitization.
Initially, we will not have any printed announcement sheets.
Hand sanitizer will be available at entrances and exits.
The worship service will be very simple for now, similar to what is currently online.
In an effort to reduce exposure, only essential persons needed to assist with worship will be serving – greeter, ushers, 1 technology/sound, and 1 communion assistant. Those with close contact with congregants are encouraged to wear a mask.
The greeters will serve as door opener and the inner entrance doors will be propped open.
We will avoid singing at this time as it is considered too risky in spreading aerosols.
Those who prepare communion elements should carefully wash their hands prior to touching any of the elements. A facemask and gloves are recommended.
Communion assistants will wear a mask, wash their hands, and use hand sanitizer.
Offering baskets will not be passed during worship. Baskets will be in the back of the sanctuary for people to place their envelopes. Online giving and Text-to-Give are also available.
Communion will be offered for those who feel comfortable coming forward to receive it. To allow for social distancing we will serve one pew at a time alternating sides of the room. Empty cups will be deposited into garbage cans located near the front pews.
Photos will be taken at each worship service and kept along with the sign-up registry in case they are needed for contact tracing purposes.
The pastor will not have a greeting line following worship but is available for those who need to speak with her.
Baptisms may be scheduled in consultation with the pastor and keeping in line with space requirements.
Frequently touched surfaces (door handles, pews, pew tops, light switches, restrooms, etc.) will be cleaned and sanitized per the CDC recommendations after every worship service. Volunteers are needed to help with this each week.
We will not have a fellowship time following worship. Members are encouraged to exit the building and socialize outside.
At this time, the pastor is not able to make visits to those members who are hospitalized, in nursing homes or care facilities.
It is also highly recommended that the pastor not make any home visits, especially to members who are the most vulnerable, until further notice.
Based on the guidance of the funeral homes, we will follow a similar pattern to worship only utilizing every other pew. This will allow room for about 50 people.
Live Streaming of the service will be provided by the funeral home and/or on the church website or Facebook Live.
Funeral luncheons are suspended for now.
Those defined by the health department as more vulnerable (60+ years of age, those with compromised immune systems, those with underlying health conditions, etc.) are encouraged to stay home and participate using the online worship resources or continue to receive mailed copies of the sermon.
Gatherings in the building may be scheduled at the discretion of the church council. Groups that meet must practice basic social distancing and cleanliness guidelines. Groups are asked to clean and sanitize the area they used following their meeting.
Guidelines may change in the upcoming days and weeks. We will continue to monitor the situation and make adjustments as needed.
This is a lot of information and this is new territory for all of us. We are learning and discovering as we go. There is so much to consider and so many different points of view. Thank you for your patience, understanding, and willingness to adjust so that we can care for all our members. My we all practice love and charity towards one another.