COVID-19 Re-Opening Plan
- Public services will begin on Sunday, June 7, 2020.
- We will archive our services on YouTube until we are capable of live streaming our worship services. The service will not be available until Sunday afternoon.
- During the phase when we are only able to record our services, the pastor’s voice will not be amplified in the sanctuary—something for those hard of hearing to consider. Once we gain that ability, the congregation will be informed.
- The service will be abreviated with less singing and no children’s lesson.
- A basket will be available in the sanctuary entryway for offerings.
- We will ensure proper distancing (a 6’ buffer between families or individuals) and cleanliness to the best of our ability.
- Those who have any of the COVID-19 symptoms should stay home.
- Those over the age of 65 and those with a compromised immune system are encouraged to participate as they feel comfortable.
- Those who are uncomfortable attending services at this time are encouraged to consider staying home.
- You are encouraged to wear a mask, but they are not required.
- Everyone should practice social distancing and proper hand washing.
- The familiar padded chairs have been temporarily removed from the sanctuary. They have been replaced by the brown folding chairs which have been completely sanitized. They are readily movable to easily adjust for proper distancing.
- One household will be allowed per section of chairs.
- Following these guidelines, we should be able to seat around 48 attendees in a worship service.
- High contact surfaces will be disinfected before the service.
- A deeper cleaning will be done after each Sunday service.
- Hymnals have been removed from the chairs.
- The entire service will be shown on the screens as usual. There will be no bulletins.
- Those who are accustomed to following along in Bibles and hymnals are encouraged to bring their own.
Before the Service
- Hand sanitizer will be available in the foyer, although members are encouraged to make use of their own sanitizers as well.
- There will be no hand shaking before or after the service.
- The elements for Holy Communion will be prepared by the pastor. This will reduce the number of people involved in the preparation and touching of the elements. Gloves and a mask will be worn during the preparation of the elements.
- Those who do not wish to commune publicly or are not comfortable communing at this time will be free not to do so, with absolutely no stigma.
- Communion will follow the closing hymn and announcements (if any). This will allow those who choose not to commune the opportunity to leave the sanctuary if they wish.
- Two tables will be set up for the distribution of communion. One will provide the wafers—each in its own individual disposable container, with the other table providing the individual disposable cups.
- Even though the elements will not be handled by the pastor or communion assistant, they will sanitize their hands as they customarily do and will wear a mask assuring members that the upmost care is being given during distribution.
- Households will be directed to approach the chancel one at a time to receive the Sacrament, maintaining social distancing with other households.
- Communicants will each take a wafer, set out individually on a table and then proceed to the next table to take an individual cup, spaced out likewise on a separate table.
- Should a non-shut-in household request private communion, please contact pastor for an appointment.
After the Service
- Pastor will not shake hands with people as they exit the sanctuary.
- Members are encouraged not to stay and socialize in the sanctuary or foyer. This is something that can be done more safely outside, if desired.
These and all practices involved with returning to public worship will be regularly visited by the church council and elders who have been elected to oversee and assure regular and orderly worship. Practices may be altered, improved or changed as new information, circumstances or authoritative guidance become available.