Worship together with COVID-19

1.  At the present time due to COVID-19, all in-person gatherings for Christ UMC are cancelled except Sunday morning worship services. This means no Wednesday night services and no Sunday School classes until further notice.

 

2.  Our worship service will begin at 11:00 AM.  Doors will open at 10:40. You may stay in your vehicle until you are ready to go through the temperature check station, OR you may wait AT A SAFE, 6 FT. DISTANCE from others as you wait to go through the temperature check station located at the front entrance to the church.

 

3.  If you are in what are considered the most vulnerable categories* for contracting COVID-19, please be prayerful and use wisdom as to your church attendance. This is difficult for all of us as we would never want to discourage people from attending worship, but for those who prefer to do so, we will continue to make our worship service available to you online.

 

4.  Use only the main entrance to the sanctuary under the porte-cochère. Once inside the building, volunteers and signage will direct you down the hall to the rear of the sanctuary where all will enter and be escorted to seats by ushers.

 

5. Masks will be required by all in attendance. You may bring your own mask, or you may use one provided by the church. If you need a mask, a greeter will assist you. Take the mask with you afterward, but please remember to bring it back each week as you come to attend worship.

 

6. Pay attention to the signage around the church indicating the importance of hand sanitization and 6 feet of social distancing at all times. Hand sanitizing stations will be strategically located throughout common areas of the church.

 

7.  You will notice new volunteer positions and changes to duty descriptions, as outlined below. 

  • Upon entry to the parking lot, you will see a parking lot attendant providing parking guidance and encouraging vehicles to park in every other parking space so that none of us are too close in the moments we are exiting and reentering our vehicles.
  • Greeters will welcome you as well as instruct you on mandatory guidelines (social distancing, masks, hand sanitizing, and restroom information).
  • Another volunteer will man a temperature check station at the front entrance of the building. Anyone whose temperature registers 100.4 or above will not be admitted but will be encouraged to join us in worship via our online option.
  • A restroom monitor will be available outside of the restrooms to provide assistance to those waiting to enter. Only 1 person at a time will be permitted in each restroom at a time due to the small, enclosed nature of the restroom facilities.
  • Two ushers will be available to direct your seating. Please tell them if you have preferential seating needs (for auditory or visual needs) so that they may seat you accordingly. Otherwise, the ushers will seat people with those in their family or “trust circle” and appropriately socially distanced from others. Ushers will also provide gentle reminders to maintain a minimum of 3 empty chairs between family groups. Every other row of seating will be unavailable to facilitate social distancing requirements. Rows will be clearly marked for seating availability. Pay attention to signage and the guidance provided by our usher teams to keep safe distancing in mind.

 

8.  Doors from the sanctuary to the restrooms will remain open to reduce contact points, and all doors will be monitored by volunteers at all times.

 

9.  There will be no nursery services provided during Sunday morning worship at this time. Please plan accordingly, bringing necessities to occupy and pacify our youngest members. 

 

10.  During this time, we will not use bulletins. There will be plenty of direction from our worship team to instruct us, and announcements will be displayed on the screens at the front.

 

11.  Just as we will not use bulletins during this time, we will also refrain from passing the offering plates. Receptacles will be located at the door for you to deposit your tithes and offerings.

 

12.  As always, there will be a designated area for those leading worship. One notable difference in our style of worship as we come back together will be the absence of singing. While we will have music during the worship service, there are scientific studies that show that the force with which we project our voices when singing- even while wearing masks- is forceful enough to cause potentially harmful droplets to be emitted into the air. We will look forward to the day when we can once again lift our voices together in praise!

 

Finally, while we understand that there are challenges before us to both worship together and keep one another safe, we know that God promises in Philippians 4:13 that we “can do all things through Christ” who gives us our strength. Drawing our strength and wisdom from Him, we will navigate this new way of worship together. 

 

* COVID-19 is a new disease and there is limited information regarding risk factors for severe disease. Based on currently available information and clinical expertise, older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions and might be at a higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19 are:

  • people 65 years and older
  • people who live in a nursing home or long-term care facility.

 

People of all ages with underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well-controlled, including:

  • people with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
  • people who have serious heart conditions
  • people who are immunocompromised

Many conditions can cause a person to be immunocompromised, including cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow or organ transplantation, immune deficiencies, poorly controlled HIV or AIDS, and prolonged use of corticosteroids and other immune weakening medications.

  • people with severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 40 or higher)
  • people with diabetes
  • people with chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis
  • people with liver disease.

 

(Source: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/people-at-higher-risk.html)