Public Worship Restart
Psalm 122:1 says “I rejoiced with those who said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the Lord.” It is a time for rejoicing! We can again gather for worship. The most important things will be the same. You will hear God’s Word, you will receive the Sacrament, and you will do it with other believers.
Many of the procedures will be different, some of them very different. This is for two reasons:
- Some are required by law.
- Some we are choosing to do in love for each other. God’s Word makes it very clear that we are to show Christian love by caring for each other’s health and well-being. I may not feel I am at risk for COVID-19, but I will also do what I can to prevent me unknowingly spreading the virus.
- Those who have any of the symptoms of COVID-19 should stay home.
- Those who are at high risk of serious illness are encouraged to stay home.
- Those who are uncomfortable attending services at this time are encouraged to stay home.
- You are encouraged to wear a mask for the entire time you are in the building if you are not fully vaccinated per CDC guidelines. Some masks are available for you if desire one, but you are encouraged to bring your own.
- Everyone should practice distancing and good hygiene.
- One row will not be used between pews, to help with proper distancing.
- Six feet of distance between households should be maintained.
- High contact surfaces (like pews and door handles) will be disinfected after every service.
- A deeper cleaning will be done after each weekend.
- The entire service will be printed. Worship folders will be placed in pews and discarded after each service.
- Those who are accustomed to following along in Bibles and hymnals are encouraged to bring their own.
- Baskets will be available in the narthex for offerings.
- The elements for Holy Communion will be prepared by someone wearing a mask and gloves.
Before the Service
- Hand sanitizer will be available at the doors.
- There will be no hand shaking before the service.
- A pastor or other member will be present in the narthex to guide people in these new procedures.
- Those who do not wish to commune or are not comfortable communing at this time will be free not to do so, with absolutely no stigma.
- Those who are distributing the Sacrament will clean their hands with soap and water immediately before distribution and wear a mask and gloves.
- The following procedures are very different from what we are used to but are meant to keep everyone as safe as possible. We have some real challenges at Divinity with the physical arrangement of our sanctuary.
- Communicants will remain in their pews for distribution.
- Pastor and his assistant will distribute new prepackaged and sealed communion sets that contain both the wine and the bread.
- If you do not wish to commune please hold up your bulletin in front of your chest so Pastor and the assistant understand.
- When everything has been distributed Pastor will say “take and eat…” and “take and drink.”
- Ziplock bags will be in the pews for your empty cup.
- Place the bag in garbage cans as you exit church.
- We will continue to record a service for viewing online.