Livestream Worship continues on Sundays at 10:00 AM
Council voted to start our in-person worship on May 9th at 10 AM on Mother’s Day.
We will continue with Christian education classes and most small groups in a virtual setting. Check our calendar or the updates page for the current schedule. All of our plans may change depending on the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic. The safety of our members, visitors, and staff is our primary concern. There will be several “stages” in our returning to public worship and activities. We will continue to live-stream to YouTube to provide an alternative to those who are in our vulnerable groups or those who are not ready to publicly gather together. The following are our recommendations for reentry in “Stage One.”
- Communication. Communicate to the church members the steps we are taking to ensure their safety when the church reopens. Clearly explain new policies, procedures, and expectations as outlined by this task group by means of multiple channels of communication.
– Email blast with guidelines to the church email list.
– Post on the church web page, Facebook, and Social Media.
– Phone tree to communicate restart date and basic guidelines
- Cleaning. Using staff and volunteers, ensure that public spaces have been thoroughly cleaned and sanitized prior to the return to worship and that a plan is in place to maintain cleanliness during the worship service.
– Pre-cleaning of the building by staff before worship service
-During Worship- cleaning of key points throughout the morning by designated personnel We will be wiping down commonly touched surfaces (doorknobs, toilet and faucet handles, counters, handrails, lift buttons, etc.) while people are present.
– Post-cleaning of the building by staff following worship service
- Education. The value of educating our congregation about common-sense practices to inhibit the spread of viruses was emphasized, including the proper way to wear masks, wash hands, and maintain social distancing. The first several weeks of live worship will include an educational segment. Prepare a ‘what to expect’ video to distribute before we come back to worship.
– Create and post a video to explain what to expect in worship service and procedures.
– Within the service announce key instructions at the beginning of the service. Encourage seniors and other vulnerable persons to continue worshiping at home via Livestream rather than coming to church. There will be special training/orientation of ushers and security team members to ensure they understand these recommendations and know how to respond to incidents, as well as appropriately guide people as they learn the new protocols.
Public Worship Service
Sunday Worship Services. The number of services will be based on attendance projections- currently, we are looking at a single service with multiple locations available if we fill up our seating capacity in order to maintain a 6 feet social distancing model.
*Capacity has been calculated at a maximum of 110 people within the sanctuary, 42-50 within Spahr Center. (Capacity is dependent upon family group size who sit together.) We have the opportunity to use other classrooms with TV screens that can show our Livestream if necessary. We may need to offer multiple service times if we exceed our capacity.
- Access. Unless security concerns override, leave entry doors (Portico and Chapel only) open in the summer so people do not have to touch door handles. Prop open all interior doors except the children’s wing. Eliminate traffic bottlenecks (such as at sanctuary entrance) where people tend to bunch up. Two points of access: Portico and Chapel will have hosts who will serve as greeters/ushers/ someone who will offer masks and take temperatures. These individuals will be trained and welcoming. Mark spaces to maintain correct social distance within entry areas in case there is a back up to get into the church during check-in.
- Discourage Lingering. Ask people to go straight into the sanctuary without stopping upon entry to the church.
- Masks. Require all congregants to be masked while in the church. Station a security team member at the door to offer a disposable mask to those who do not have one. We will allow worship leaders to go unmasked while leading worship.
- Temperature Checks. Check people at the door with an infrared thermometer. Our greeter/ host will be trained to use them at each point of entry. If someone objects, let them discuss it with our security person who will encourage them to be tested for entry. A temperature of 100.4 is considered a failing temperature and they will be asked to leave and offered encouragement, prayer and assistance back to their car with follow up after the service.
- Hand Sanitizer. Multiple foaming sanitizer stations are already in place around the church. We encourage people to use them.
- Social Distancing. Maintain social distancing in all directions by designating pew space using tape and signage. Designate specific “spaces” for families to use, increasing the spacing according to family size. Recommendations for Returning to Sunday & Weekday Programming Block off every other pew. Allow for open seating within the designated safe zone within the pews. Ushers may be used to assist in the seating due to our limited space.
- Additional Seating. If needed, set up Spahr Center as an overflow area, showing Livestream feed in real-time. Another possibility is offering multiple services if needed to comply with regulations regarding social distancing and maximum group sizes.
- Bulletins. There will not be paper bulletins in Stage One. We will record video announcements or make verbal announcements at the end of the service.
- Hymnals and Pew Materials. Hymnals, Bible, and pew cards have been removed from racks to avoid having to sanitize each week. Use the projection screen for all lyrics and worship aids.
- Greeting Time. Use non-contact methods to greet quickly – waves, air hugs, etc.
- Sharing and Prayer time. Eliminate the congregational handling of microphones. Ask at stage one for all prayer requests to be communicated to Pastor Kregg before the Sharing Time.
- Communion. Make pre-packaged communion sets available for pickup prior to the service to eliminate the need to distribute. Our first possible Sunday for Communion would be July 5th.
- Offering. Eliminate the passing of offering plates. We will provide two secured offering boxes; one in the sanctuary foyer and the second near the church office. We also encourage people to use digital forms of giving where possible. Place offering envelopes where offerings are collected.
- Choir. Full choir rehearsals and performances will not take place in Stage One.
- Praise Team. Our praise team shall consist of no more than four singers (at Stage One) who will practice safe social distancing at 12 feet apart.
- Dismissal. Ushers will dismiss the congregation by row to avoid bunching people up at exits and keep safe distancing. Having “one-way corridors” was discussed to prevent people from meeting others face to face while traveling. The “one-way corridor” will use Fairmount Hallway as an entrance before the service and after the service to Portico. The Shelburn Hallway will be used as an alternative direction for both services. Pastor Kregg and Ann will not be greeting at the back of the service but will be available after the service in Spahr Center following the end of the service.
- Coffee. In Stage One there will not be coffee provided nor a Coffee Hour following the service. People may bring their own coffee but are encouraged to keep their masks on and take their cup/dispose of their cup following the service.
- Water Fountains. Fountains will be turned off, however small bottles of water will be provided. 19.Toilet Handles. Signs will remind people to thoroughly wash their hands before leaving the bathroom.
- Children’s Ministries. We are asking parents to keep children with them in the sanctuary rather than attempting a separate children’s gathering. We will provide take-home bags of activities to keep children occupied during the sermon and providing a “children’s moment” (such as a short video) during the worship service.
- Baptisms. Allow baptisms only if the pastor and the baptismal candidate are willing to assume the risk.
- Signage. Signs will be helpful to remind people of expectations regarding shaking hands / keeping distance / good hygiene practices.
- Exposure. In the event we find that we have been exposed to COVID-19, we will take proper measures to ensure the health and safety of our members and work with health care authorities. We shall follow all State of Ohio guidelines in the sharing of information and the communication of information to the congregation.
- Key Staff/Volunteers. Key worship staff or volunteer duties will be handed off if staff or volunteers become ill or require quarantine.
Sunday/Weekday Meetings and Classes
- Discipleship Classes. At Stage One, our classes will continue to meet online. However, Sunday discipleship classes will be moved to later in the afternoon or evening via Zoom or conference call at Stage One to provide time between services and homes.
- Other Church Events. All events are canceled at this time in Stage One.
- Outside Groups. We want to balance the value of hosting outside groups (such as recovery groups) with the need to keep spaces clean. The consensus was to allow vital small groups but requiring sanitizing after the group meets at a cost to be borne by the group. A standard of requiring 36 sq. ft. space per person will be used to determine maximum capacity for a room and social distancing will be required of each group.
Re-Entry Task Force
Kim Kidd Collins, Moderator
Carolyn Neal, Vice-Moderator
Rev. Dr. Kregg Burris, Sr. Pastor
Rev. Jeff Gordon, Assoc. Pastor
Rev. Sandra Alexander Haynes, Assoc. Pastor
Iris Goins Monroe Goins
Cleveland Baptist Association COVID-19 Videos
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