The Session met Sunday afternoon to discuss what a wise reopening could, should, and would look like. After viewing the survey results and many other documents, we are committed to Godly patience while moving forward with a plan. With that said, we decided to have a service on the church lawn JUNE 28th. This will give us time to see if COVID-19 has spread during Washington State’s reopening. We have many vulnerable people in our congregation. Not just senior citizens. We have children, young adults, and many that look healthy but have underlying health concerns. You know who you are and WE HIGHLY RECOMMEND VULNERABLE PEOPLE DISCUSS WITH THEIR HEALTH PROVIDER WHAT IS BEST GIVEN THE SITUATION. We will not turn people away. But we want people to feel safe and BE safe. We have many things to consider before moving forward.
CLICK HERE IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO VIEW THE RESULTS OF OUR SURVEY
So, this is what was discussed and decided at the meeting for the days ahead.
- June 28th we will have a service on the church lawn at 9:00 am.
- The service will be no more than one hour.
- There will be no sound system at this first lawn service.
- Please bring your own water, coffee, or refreshments. There will be nothing provided by the church due to the COVID-19 situation.
- People are not to share any refreshments they brought for themselves with others.
- We encourage people to bring their own chairs. We will have our church white chairs available if people need them.
- People are encouraged to provide their own shade. Umbrellas were suggested at the Session meeting. Large hats are totally appropriate.
- ALL in attendance MUST WEAR MASKS.
- We will have hand-washing stations available at the gathering.
- Folks need to maintain 6 feet of distancing between others at all times.
- There will be no hugging or personal touch.
- We are hoping to have Communion. The details are being discussed. It will not be the same but we hope to create a community experience of the Lord’s Supper that is within the COVID-19 guidelines.
- Church Restrooms will be available. Only 2 people are allowed in the bathrooms at a time. It is best to empty the bladder before attending church.
- Per guidelines, we will take attendance and note the seating locations of all who are present in case a need for contact tracing develops.
- We will evaluate the June 28th service and seek input from congregants about proceeding in the future.
We all desire to gather as the church again. Let’s remember that we have not stopped being the church or participating in the ministry of the church. It has taken on a new face given the COVID-19 context but the church is alive and well. We all want our old normal to return. We seek to lead into that wisely, cautiously, and with great care for the vulnerable among us.
I received this BENEDICTION from Martin Webber this morning. It is in French but the English is provided in the video. French is one eight languages in Martin’s tool bag. He frequently flies from Belgium to France or Africa to teach graduate and doctoral classes. Let this familiar song remind us that the church covers the globe and we are connected in Christ Jesus.
CLICK HERE to listen to the benediction
Peace of CHRIST,
Mark (and the Session)