An update from our Pastor Ken Goodrich.
May 13, 2020
Hello Friends, In my message to all y’all two weeks ago I raised the point that the Session and Staff would be meeting on May 12th. We did so. I also promised that I would communicate the results of that meeting to you. To address the meeting: Your Session and Staff are working diligently but methodically, to ensure your safety, so we can return to in - person worship. We are encouraged by the way the Social Media Services and posts are being viewed and shared (I do hope you are sharing these posts). I believe that the quality of the online worship production has no peer. Through your participation, our Facebook and YouTube posts are having wonderful success, and, in most cases, the social media average exceeds our Sunday in person attendance significantly. So, we are blessed to have the highest of quality worship around (Thanks to Jodie and Matt; now if that darn Pastor was just better looking). Don’t you just love Tim’s daily posts as well?
It is because we have the high quality online presence that the peer pressure, coming from other churches beginning to open, can be fought. However, we also understand the need to begin worshiping together sooner than later. We also need you to remember that we are just starting Phase 1 of the opening process and there are government guidelines (floridahealthcovid19.gov) that we are required, we must, adhere to. Large gatherings of at - risk populations are still discouraged and the density or number in one venue is limited to 250 people. However, the biggest obstacle for the Session, and you, is to, “Cancel gatherings of more than 10 people for organizations that serve higher - risk populations.” (Considerations for Postponing or Cancelling a Mass Gathering, Gov. DeSantis’ Plan for Florida’s Recovery - Safe. Smart. Step - by - Step, Wed. 5/13/2020@1:20PM)
We have some strategies in place that utilize the CDC developed guidelines as our template. These strategies are in place to prevent the spread of COVID -19. We also plan to implement additional tasks as various organizations and the denomination determine what are in the best interest of worshipers and participants.
Some of those are, but not limited to: wearing masks, Social Distancing of at least six feet, humming instead of singing, suspending Fellowship Hour, suspending Passing of the Peace, worshipers’ temperatures taken prior to entrance, Fellowship Hall Entrance only, significantly reduce the number of attendees, no singing as a choir. Our Sunday School will work as goes the School District.
We are endeavoring to have specific processes and pre-checks in place prior to us assembling. We will begin communicating those processes as we test and assess them.
To address the questionnaire: We have developed a questionnaire and it will be available prior to the weekend as we proofread and verify the questions are pertinent. We want and need your participation to better accommodate you in some of our methods as we move forward. It will only take a few minutes (maybe two) to complete.
We will meet again at our scheduled Session meeting date for May and evaluate the results of the questionnaire and the feedback we receive. At that meeting we will contemplate dates for soft openings,with just the Session members, to iron out the issues that fell off during the execution of those openings so that when you return you can be confident you will be safe, along with being excited to be back.