I wanted to take a moment to clarify a few things regarding our Letter To Parishioners regarding our reopening of St. John's. As this is a very uncertain time, we are encouraging those who are 65 or older to stay home, but this is not a rule or a must. At the heart of what I am saying is, if you have your reasons for not coming, please stay home and do not feel badly about your choice. You can always reassess your decision as we move forward.
If you are feeling comfortable with the safety protocols we have implemented and you feel it’s right for you, then please do join us. No one wants to see anyone get sick, and we have worked very hard to make sure we are ready for this Sunday. If we feel we are not ready to safely reopen this Sunday and stay open in the weeks to come, we will reassess and let everyone know. I sincerely hope you are at peace with whatever decision you make. I realize it may be a difficult personal choice and I would like all of you to know you will be in my payers.
Here are some other points to please keep in mind:
- We are also having the signup mostly in advance online (for contact tracing purposes), and we will be lining up with distance at the door on 13th
- There will be an usher at the door to greet you
- There will be hand sanitizer to be used before putting on your mask and entering church
- Parishioners strongly encouraged to wear masks - please bring your own if possible, but it will gladly be provided for you
- Pease maintain 2m or more physical distancing. The pews are marked off with tape, you can sit at the green squares
- You will be guided to your seating with numbers and directional flow arrows - front first to back in church as you arrive so as best we can avoid sweeping by other people
- There will be no processing up aisle by church leadership
- Please leave back to front, and please make use of the hand sanitizer as you leave
- There is no Communion, for this phase. We hope to start in-person Communion at Advent
- There will be no Collection Plate passing. The Collection Plate will be on a table. Thank you!
- This will be a shorter Morning Prayer service for this phase of our reopening
- Please pick up your bulletin as no one will be able to hand it to you.
- Regrettably the bathrooms may not be used except in an emergency
- There will be a few hymns by soloist-at least 5m apart from others
- The Leadership will be at front distanced more than 2m from congregation in order to speak
- There will be professional cleaning and sanitizing before and after church services.
This is only a part of what the Reopening Team considered. You can read more in the reopening document, by clicking here and opening the Downloads at the bottom of that page. I know the other Anglican church I went to visit this summer put a lot of thought into making it as safe as possible and I believe that our 8 person reopening committee have done so and we can implement this too. The Diocese told us they have seen many reopening plans and that our reopening plan was more thorough than many. Let us all pray for a safe reopening of our our church and the congregating of our beloved community of St. John's.
If you have questions or ideas or concerns about the plan, by all means please let me or Chris or Peter or Patrick know.