I write to you today with happy news. Beginning this Sunday, we will be returning to in-person worship for 10 a.m. This is an announcement that I have looked forward to for over six months, just as I know many of you have. Before going further, let me assure those who are not yet comfortable with making the return to in-person that we will continue to livestream services and offer the Communion station at noon.
As with each step of the journey thus far, there are some important considerations that will remain in place as they have to this point:
- Anyone who is sick, running a fever, or has been in close contact with someone else who is should not attend services. Likewise, those with increased risk factors are advised to exercise caution when deciding whether or not to attend.
- Masks are required of all attendees.
- Everyone is asked to sign-in either at the front door or when entering the back doors to Pearson Hall. A hand sanitizing station is available at both locations.
- Appropriate social distancing is to be practiced by all. Pews will be roped off to assist with distancing and switched to alternate pews between services.
- Aside from the nave and main floor restrooms, all other facilities are to be considered closed off on Sunday mornings except for the purposes of entering and exiting the building to attend services.
- There will be no Sunday School or nursery provided. Children are welcome to join their parents in the nave for services according to parental discretion.
- The offering plate will be available at the door to the Nave and will not be passed.
- Communion will be in one kind, host only, and distributed standing with communicants waiting to consume the Sacrament until after they have stepped to the side of the church or they have returned to their pew.
- Attendance is limited to 35.
With respect to the last line, we will have advance signups for the 10 a.m. service (No signup is required for 8 a.m.). These will be in place through at least All Saints, until we have an idea of where our average attendance will be for now.
In addition to these previously used measures, there are some new elements as well. While our sextons do a fine job keeping our physical plant clean from week to week, we are asking for the following assistance in keeping the church clean between the two Sunday services:
- Following the 8 a.m. service, those in attendance are asked to grab a disinfecting wipe from the narthex and briefly clean the area in which they were sitting including the pew and pew back in front of them.
- Upon entering the 10 a.m. service, those in attendance are asked to wipe down the area in which they will be sitting, including the pew and pew back in front of them.
Finally, there are some restrictions for the time being with respect to singing. We will continue to offer a full range of music for the 10 a.m. service and some Holy Days. Should you choose to attend a liturgy with music, please observe the following guidelines:
- No singing except on the part of the Celebrant and/or a designated Cantor.
Father Ben Hankinson