We hope this letter finds both your body and soul doing well in the Lord.
As we gather, we know that there are questions in everyone’s mind concerning what things look like, as we have had COVID-19 cases within our own congregation. Below we have tried to anticipate and answer your most prominent questions and provide recommendations.
1. What if I am sick, don’t feel 100%, or may have been in direct contact with a COVID-positive person?
Out of love for others, please stay home and worship with us online.
2. What if I am in the high-risk category?
We are encouraging those who are in the high-risk category to stay home and worship with us online. That being said, we know that there will be some of you in this category who will elect to join us for corporate worship anyway. Obviously, that is your call to make. We trust you to make the right decision for your situation. Our basic encouragement to everyone is just to be wise and prayerful as we gather for corporate worship.
3. What if I still don’t feel comfortable about gathering for worship?
That is perfectly fine. There is no shame in not attending during this unique season. When you do feel ready to join us, we will welcome you with open arms!
4. Will online service still be provided?
Yes. We plan to stream the worship gathering as usual on Facebook Live starting at 11 a.m. each Sunday.
5. What about masks?
Masks are not mandated. If the fact that others might not wear masks concerns you, refer back to question #3.
6. How will seating be configured in the sanctuary?
Once you enter the building, we encourage you to immediately go into the sanctuary and be seated. We ask that people try to sit every other row and avoid sitting with people you haven't seen recently.
7. What about Communion?
We serve Communion, but it will look a little different. The elders will serve Communion as usual, but we will not pass the plates. Instead, the elders will bring the plates to each individual. If you are nervous about taking Communion for any reason, we invite you to refrain from taking Communion that Sunday and wait until you can take it without concern.
8. What other prudent steps will we be taking to ensure everyone’s safety?
Instead of passing the offering, we will have an offering plate at the back of the sanctuary for you to place your offering in as you leave.
Hand sanitizer is made available.
9. What should I keep at the forefront of my mind during all of this?
This would be a wonderful time for all of us to meditate on Ephesians 4:1-2 - “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”
God has called us to be a people marked by humility, gentleness, patience, love, and peace.
We may disagree with one another on a whole host of things connected to the COVID-19 crisis, but, as followers of Jesus, we must work for unity and peace by relating to one another with all humility, gentleness, patience, and love.