St. John’s Family,
The St. John’s Leadership Board met last evening to determine our next steps forward in our call to offer effective and safe ministry and mission to Christ. The Board approached their work in prayer and engaged in difficult discussions with diligence and grace. All discussions were focused on enabling as many people as possible to safely participate in in-person worship and ministry while taking steps to move us toward the fullness of congregational life together.
Discussion on many aspects of our ministry were explored. A detailed update explaining all the changes approved will be sent next week. The following is a summary of the decisions made. Please note this is our first step forward in a multi-step process.
Effective Sunday, June 6, the following updates will be implemented:
· Pre-registration for worship via SignUp Genius will no longer be required. Half of the Sanctuary will offer open seating without distancing; the opposite half will maintain distancing. Seating will be increased in Fellowship Hall and arranged in a similar fashion.
· Masks will be required upon entering our facility, including for worship, at this time. For small group gatherings and meetings where all attendees are vaccinated, the group can determine within their gathering if masks are required. Leaders are asked to take into consideration all in their group as the decision is made such that as many as possible can participate.
· Partaking in food and beverages in meetings and small group settings is at the discretion of the leader(s) in consultation with their group. Requests to use the kitchen will be reviewed by the Leadership Board on a case-by-case basis; requests should be forwarded in writing to the Pastor.
· Congregational singing will resume in our worship services! Aspects of worship that require close contact (collection of offerings, Passing of the Peace) will remain distanced.
As noted above, this is our first step. The Leadership Board will meet again on July 7 to reassess our approach. Significant public health updates, such as increases to the vaccination rate of the general public, will be assessed in real time to allow for adjustments.
I will close this note as I did last week: continue to keep our congregation and leadership lifted up in prayer while holding on to the steadfast assurance that the God who has brought us this far will not abandon us now! We’re taking our first step forward trusting that more steps will follow as we serve our Lord faithfully.
Grace and Peace,