What a joy it was to gather together once again! Many thanks to all of you for serving and loving one another well as we resumed our in-person gatherings. Good work, Church!
This week we will continue with the same approach as last week, limiting our gatherings to 100 people in accordance with the guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health. We will also continue to broadcast our worship service live at 10:45am on WEBQ and Facebook Live. If you aren't attending in person, we hope you will be tuning in from home!
On Sunday, we will host at least 2 gatherings of up to 100 people at 9:00am and 10:45am. We can add a 6pm option if we need to, and we even have a plan for a fourth if necessary. You’ll need to pre-register for a spot at one of these gatherings either by clicking on the following links or by calling the church office (252-7491):
Below, you will find some additional detailed information. If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to stop by or call the church office.
- Pre-Registration- This is not about requiring a ticket for entry. It’s about planning ahead for capacity limits laid out in IDPH guidance. Under the new guidance, there is no provision for an indoor gathering over 100 people regardless of the size of the building. So, rather than have people at the door with counters and then turning people away once we get to 100, we decided it would be best to do that counting and planning ahead of time for everyone’s sake. We have left a little bit of room for unexpected walk-ups, and we have a contingency plan for an overflow, if necessary. We are also glad to add a third or even a fourth service if the 9am and 10:45am fill up. If your plans change after you register and you will no longer be attending, please let us know so that we can open that spot up for someone else.
- Face Covering and Social Distancing- We know this rubs some people the wrong way- big time. We know that it’s uncomfortable, and inconvenient to say the least. We have yet to encounter an individual who enjoys wearing a mask. But this about selflessly loving our neighbor- especially the vulnerable among us. Bottom line: wearing the mask is not about you. It’s not about you not catching something from someone else. It’s about you not unknowingly spreading something to someone else. And I will admit that it’s not perfect, but it does help. Like sneezing into a tissue doesn’t catch all the crud, but it catches a lot of it and we would be appalled at someone just sneezing it all out there. Covering our faces also follows the CDC and IDPH guidance along with the advice we are getting from local medical professionals. So, we will require that masks be worn during the gathering and we will provide them for people who don’t bring their own. We will also observe social distance by only occupying every other row of seats and asking households to distance themselves by at least 6 feet from other households. Please read Dr. Winkleman's article below for more information.
- Elderly and Vulnerable- We know that there are certain segments of the population (and of our congregation) that are more susceptible to illness than others. According to the CDC, those include people who are 65 years and older or people of all ages with underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled. If you are in these categories it is probably best for you to stay home for now and continue to tune in on the radio or Facebook Live at 10:45am. This is not because we don’t want you here, but because we love you and are concerned for your well-being.
- Symptoms- If you are feeling bad- at all- please stay home. One of the lessons we will need to take out of this whole mess as a society is that we need to be more careful about gathering with people when we are sick (whether with the coronavirus or anything else). So, if you have symptoms like sore throat, cough, nausea, diarrhea, headache, and certainly if you have a fever, PLEASE STAY HOME- for your own sake and for the sake of others.
- Childcare- We will not be offering childcare during these services.
- Cleaning- We will be taking extra precautions when it comes to cleaning before, during, between, and after the services.