Earlier this summer, Church Council authorized the creation of a “Re-Opening Task Force.” This Task Force was charged with responsibility for the development of a set of guidelines to govern a phased re-opening of the church to in-person worship services and other church activities, including small group ministry and committee meetings, use of the church by outside groups, the Nursery School, and our Sunday School and other children and family ministries. Each phase would be contingent on the achievement of certain COVID-19-related public health milestones.
This Task Force consists of Chris Stowell (chair), Matt Wooster, Anne Marie Holloway, Rob Andrews, Mimi D’Angelo, Elaine Vildzius, and Cynthia Gordan. They are meeting regularly and are currently considering the addition of an in-person service – with readings, prayers, and music– at some time during the week that would not conflict with the (virtual) 10:00 a.m. Sunday morning worship services being offered. Once the format and timing for the new in-person service are finalized, the clergy will reach out to the congregation with the details.
In addition, a clear decision has been made to continue the virtual version of our Sunday morning worship services throughout the period that the COVID-19 epidemic is with us. Once we are able to resume in-person Sunday morning worship services, we will begin live streaming those services. To further this objective, we are already working to develop the technology needed to record and live stream them for the benefit of people who have difficulty coming to church, are ill, or are out of town.
This Task Force will also be conducting a survey of the congregation later this month to determine the level of interest and comfort with in-person, but appropriately socially-distanced, masked, etc. worship services.
The Task Force presented their plans to the Ushering Committee and the Board of Deacons, and will consider input received from both when preparing a detailed report for review at the next Church Council meeting, which is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, September 8.
Christopher Stowell, Chair
Re-Opening Task Force