From the Leadership Team About Regathering...
Our Leadership Team continues to work hard on plans for regathering for onsite worship. No date has been set yet; we would like your help by sharing two things in this email:
First, we want to share with the you our preliminary ideas of what you can expect should you choose to worship with us onsite when we regather. Please read these plans below.
Second, there is a link to a brief survey at the end. Your input is important! It will help us make wise decisions about a date for regathering, how many might attend in the beginning, and how our tentative plans affect your decision. We want to crawl before we walk, so thanks for keeping that in mind! We appreciate your patience.
We are calling this first phase Online Worship with an Onsite Option. We will continue to stream our services online. If you are in a high risk population, or if you feel uneasy in a group setting, please know that we understand your decision to continue to worship online as long as you desire. If you decide to worship onsite, we will do everything we can to accommodate you with the best precautions we can offer. If we discover that more want to worship onsite than we can accommodate with social distancing, we may ask some to continue to worship online for a while as we consider options. The Leadership Team desires that we begin with only one service with overflow seating, and we will consider a second service as needed.
Here is what you can expect if you choose to worship onsite in this phase:
1. Disposable masks will be available in the Welcome Center (though you may bring your own). We encourage you to wear a mask at least until you are in your seat for worship.
2. There will be no Life Groups meeting onsite and no childcare provided in our beginning phase. We will continue to evaluate as we go!
3. You are asked to follow recommended precautions:
- Wash hands often. Good hand washing is the best method of preventing the spread of COVID-19.
- Cover your mouth if you cough or sneeze
- Please stay at home if you are not feeling well or have a fever
- Replace handshakes and hugs with other forms of greeting for now
- Wear a mask if you are within 6 feet of others and maintain safe distancing. As mentioned, we will have disposable masks available for those who need them. Please discard your disposable mask on your way out of the building, as repeated use of the same mask increases your risk of infection, and there is no need to wear one outdoors.
- Wearing of gloves is discouraged as they, too, must be discarded after each use to prevent further spread of potential particles.
4. Enter through designated areas. Hosts will greet you at the Welcome Center door and direct you to pick up a bulletin from the table by the Sanctuary door. (We will also make this information available online from your phone or tablet.)
5. In the Sanctuary, sit in designated pews. Some will be roped off for social distancing. We will try to fill the seats beginning from the front. Families and those coming together may sit together but please leave 6 feet between you and the next person or group.
6. Offering baskets will be placed at exits; no offering plates will be passed.
7. As the service ends, congregants you will be dismissed by rows, beginning at the back of the Sanctuary.
8. Since singing spreads many more particles, most of our music will be offered by worship leaders. For congregational songs, we will follow specific recommendations, which likely will mean no congregational singing. We will encourage humming along and singing silently to oneself. Remember, the Lord is our audience, and he can hear a whispered song!
We are taking these first steps with great care, and some may sound strict. But your health is a big priority for us, and we don’t think these will prove overly difficult. We will learn as we go. The coronavirus is highly contagious, and we do not want anyone to put themselves in a situation they are uncomfortable with, so please do not feel pressured to attend worship “in person.” For those who do choose to worship onsite, we are glad to provide that option! And we want you to know we are taking seriously the cleanliness of our facilities and social distancing. We hope that our guidelines simply let you know how careful we are trying to be.
PLEASE TAKE OUR BRIEF ONLINE SURVEY:
Or go to our website to take the survey. (See link below.)
The survey will help us to finalize our plans and decide on the right time to begin this phase of Online Worship with an Onsite Option. We encourage each person to complete a survey. If you complete one survey for a couple or a family, etc., let us know how many people your answers reflect.
Thanks so much!!
Pastor Fred and the Leadership Team