by: Eric Ayala
As our community is being opened up in phases, we too will be doing our own phase 1 for the church as we gather together again in person. We will be constantly assessing the situation, and our phases may not mirror the phases of the civil government, as we may have more or less depending on what is prudent. Here is what phase 1 for us will look like:
- We will resume meeting at the physical church location at 5:00pm on Sundays starting 5/10/2020.
- Due to social distancing recommendations we will limit space to 25% capacity of the building.
- This generally means families sitting together using every other pew. If there is a need for overflow, we are working on the ability to use the TV downstairs in the fellowship hall for extra space. Considering the current size of our congregation and potential visitors we should be able to accommodate everyone.
- We recognize that due to social distancing that there are some people who may not be able to get rides to the physical location. We also realize there are some who may feel they are in the at-risk category for the virus and may not feel safe at this point to physically be at church. At this phase our 75% attendance requirement for members will be on hold. We still, however, highly encourage you to stay connected.
- Rather than sermon recordings, we will be working on Live Streaming our services for those who are unable to attend. Give us some leeway here as the technology is new to us.
- Nursery and the Children’s Class will not be available for the time being.
- We will not be having fellowship meals, or other in-person events other than the Sunday Worship gathering at this time. The first Sunday back (2/10/2020) will not have Coffee Talk or Reformation Teens. The next Sunday, Coffee Talk, Reformation Teens, and other events we have over Zoom will continue on Zoom.
- After the service is over, while greeting is fine and expected, we do ask that you not linger and that children should not make use of the playground. For my family it means leaving right after the service.
- If you feel more comfortable wearing gloves or face masks you can do so. Whatever you wear to the grocery store is probably a good guideline.
- The Lord’s Supper will not be celebrated on our first Sunday back as there will already be a lot of changes to handle. The following Sunday however (5/17/2020), we will have Lord’s Supper with individual distribution of elements so no one is touching of the same container.
- We will not be passing the plate for offering at this time. Offerings will be received through a donation box at the church building or through our online giving platform on our website.
- For the time being Kameron will continue to lead us in worship by himself.
- Hymnals should still be used between families, so bring yours and take them back with you when service is over.
As previously mentioned, these are all temporary precautions. We will, as always, update you as soon as anything changes. One request I have, let us not look at this as “getting back to the way things were” I don’t want to go back to the way things were. I want us to take these lessons of what it means to be together, the importance of seeing each other, of missing of each other, and use that to motivate us to hold church attendance and fellowship more sweetly than ever. I am excited that this phase can finally come and we can be in each other’s presence as church is meant to be. Blessings to you all.