Dear Friends and Family of Scottsville UMC:
As we approach Fall, we continue to see ways that a tiny little virus has completely upended our lives. Schools, sports teams, places of employment, stores, restaurants and churches all have been affected and all have had to wrestle with the question: “when is it safe to reopen.”
The Administrative Council and the Healthy Church Team at Scottsville have wrestled with the same question, trying to manage the goals of gathering together and yet keeping everyone safe.
In a meeting held this morning (August 14), the Administrative Council agreed to a recommendation that SUMC re-open for in-person worship with a number of I’s to be dotted and T’s to be crossed:
· We will follow all the guidelines of the Commonwealth of Virginia, the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church, and the Reopening Plan prepared by the Healthy Church Team of SUMC. These guidelines are quite specific, and during this Phase, our worship service will not look or feel the way it used to. But the important thing will be that we will be able to gather together, even while remaining socially distant.
· We will be creating a system for monitoring local conditions concerning the COVID-19 pandemic. One or more people will be tasked with the responsibility to establish a network of contacts within Scottsville and surrounding areas in order to monitor local conditions concerning the pandemic. They will be responsible for notifying the Administrative Council of changes in local conditions so that the Administrative Council can determine appropriate steps.
We plan to resume in-person worship as soon as the conditions of the Reopening Plan can be satisfied. Initially, our services may simply consist of gathering together in our sanctuary to watch the current online worship services. In due course, we will re-introduce additional live components of our worship.
These plans are still being developed and supplies are being ordered. We ask for your patience for a couple more weeks so that we can bring all these pieces together. Please watch for additional details.
We also recognize that not everyone will feel comfortable returning to in-person worship at this time. That is OK. We will continue to produce our online worship and reach out to minister to you in every way that is safe and prudent.
In these days, I am reminded of the words of encouragement that we find in Hebrews 12:1-2:
… let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God…
May it be so! Amen.