Reopening Update from Pastor Chris 4/22/21
Hello, Grace Community!
As the number of COVID cases are going down and the number of those being fully vaccinated continues to go up, we are expanding the reopening of our church campus – specifically, our activities on Sunday mornings for worship. I am writing you on behalf of the leadership of Grace to share various updates in how we will be worshipping together moving forward. You can find a detailed explanation of all these changes at the end of this email. In summary, we are completely removing many of the protocols we’ve had in place and loosening up the parameters of others.
As always, we have been guided in making these decisions by prayerful discernment, common sense, and consulting the latest information and directives of our government and health agencies. Our continued goal as your leadership is to be wise, safe, and compassionate in enacting practices that respect and honor all people, including the most vulnerable among us. Thank you for your ongoing support in adapting to these changes over the past year. We respectfully ask for your cooperation with the remaining protocols as we look forward to the time when all restrictions are removed.
Over this last year, much has changed, and many have been lost within both our community and our wider world. While things are trending in an encouraging direction, we are not out of the woods yet. As the gradual reopening of our state and resumption of day-to-day activities continues, Grace is only just beginning to discover where we currently stand and where we go from here. It is this part of the transition – of recovery and healing – that can often be the most challenging to endure.
As we move forward in expanding our activities on Sunday mornings, there is a need for more volunteers to make this happen. Providing coffee service, nursery care, children’s Sunday school, and other forms of hospitality require able and enthusiastic members of our Grace family to give of their time and energy.
We humbly ask all who consider Grace their home church, if they are not already doing so, to contribute to our reopening efforts. Please contact the church office or talk to one of our pastors, elders, or staff, if you need more information about how you can help. The church office is open from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Monday – Thursday and can be reached at 714-899-1700
or by email via [email protected]
Now more than ever it is crucial that we rally and walk together into the future the Lord has prepared for us. Our God has been faithful in bringing us this far. We can rest assured He will lead and provide for us in this next season of our life together. As people of the Resurrection, let be assured that if we follow Jesus, we as Grace shall rise and flourish again.
ALL CHANGES RELATED TO SUNDAY WORSHIP AND ON-CAMPUS ACTIVITIES AT GRACE
On arriving for Sunday worship or being on campus
- The Sunday, in-person worship service will remain at 9:30 a.m.
Worship on Wednesday (WOW) also is offered on Wednesdays at 11:00 a.m.
- Temperature checks will no longer be required.
- Wearing masks, full ventilation, and 6 feet of social distancing will continue.
- Sanctuary capacity will increase from 100 to 200. Pews will not be blocked off.
- Ushers will direct people to sit staggered from the people in the rows
in front and behind them. This allows for appropriate social distancing.
During Sunday worship services
- Praise band and choir members will begin to be added back to the music teams. They will remain 6 feet apart from each other and will be masked while singing.
- Lyrics for all songs will be back on the screens. The community will be encouraged to receive all music and asked not to sing at this time.
- Bibles will be returned to the pews.
- A printed bulletin will no longer be offered. All information related to the service will be available online via gracefamily.info and will be accessible through the use of one’s smartphone or tablet.
- A printed, weekly community prayer list will be provided at the entrance to the sanctuary.
- Offering boxes will remain at the entrance to the sanctuary.
- The elements for Holy Communion will continue to be offered via individually sealed kits.
- Children’s Sunday school for ages, kindergarten through 5th grade, will be available.
- Nursery care for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers will be available
WHEN there are sufficient volunteers to provide childcare.
After Sunday worship services
- Coffee will be offered before and after the worship service on Sundays PROVIDED there are enough volunteers to set and clean up the coffee service.
- Members of the community will be asked to continue to wear their masks
when they are not drinking their coffee. Holding a cup of coffee will not be sufficient for not wearing one’s mask.
- Donuts or other food will not be offered at this time.
- The playground will be rototilled, the equipment cleaned, and then will be reopened for use by children and their families.