Updates On Re-opening Our Church
On March 12, 2021, Minnesota Governor Tim Waltz lifted capacities on worship space—as long as masking is in place and social distancing is in place. On March 16, the COVID-19 Safety Task Force met to discuss what those changes mean for Peace Church.
At our discussion, Pastor Greg had just taken part in a discussion with the Minnesota Department of Health and clergy from the Minnesota Conference of the UCC. Consistent among UCC congregations was the desire not simply to follow the maximum allowable capacity, but to more gradually open. We discussed the importance of taking into account the concept of herd immunity—so that people who are not able to get the vaccine for whatever reason are more protected. This means getting a vaccine if you are able and when it is offered to you—as well as cutting down risks that might increase spread and the amount of variations.
With that as background, we decided to do the following:
- Allow 15 pods to attend worship.
- Allow up to 3 pods of kids for Story For All Ages.
- Continue with all masking and social distancing, regardless of vaccination status, so that there is no extra privilege that comes with being vaccinated. We realize that we all are tired of masks, yet for those who have not or cannot get the vaccine, we want to be respectful of them and keep the guidelines consistent for everyone.
- The choir will be able to do socially distant and masked singing starting after Easter for up to 30 minutes.
- We recognize that people in the congregation may be vaccinated and want to socialize with other vaccinated friends. We encourage that. At this point, we won’t be accommodating that at church because we want to make sure our policies are welcoming for all.
- We look forward to warmer weather when we can get the tent up to allow more lower risk opportunities outdoors, but for now, we are trying to gradually open up while taking into account all of the different aspects of ending the pandemic and helping us all make it through.
~From Your Covid Task Force