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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: [May 17, 2021]

Here is what the COVID Reopening team talked about at the May 17 meeting:

  1. Changes/updates to services based on learnings from services:

    1. Pew seating

      1. We value the positive impact masking, social distancing, hygiene and staying home if ill has made

      2. Based on this, we will stay with the old configuration of every other pew available for seating to allow for distancing, singing and adjusting to changing guidelines

      3. We need to continue to remind everyone through Pastor’s message, usher comments and email/bulletin/newsletter that it is OK to move seats if you are not comfortable. This includes the freedom to continue to wear masks in addition to social distancing. You have accountability for yourself to do what is comfortable for you/your family

      4. Seating in Fellowship Hall will continue to be an option based on personal preferences

      5. It will be the usher’s discretion – combined with that of individual worshippers – on how to seat in Chapel

    2. Usher escorts

      1. We need to continue to announce during service that ushers will be escorting the congregation out after service

    3. BYOC&C (Bring Your Own Coffee & Chairs)

      1. This worked for a small group and will continue until the full coffee service when Congregational Life can host

  2. Medical team update on any new information/best practices/recommendations from MDH/CDC

    1. When it comes to the safety of the congregation – we continue to value the guidelines being offered by the CDC and more specifically the MN department of Health’s StaySafe Minnesota recommendations

    2. We believe a relaxation of guidelines represents some degree of risk for those who choose not to add additional layers of protection such as vaccination

    3. That said, we value personal accountability for congregation members to make their own decisions about what is right for them and their families

    4. Staff should continue to follow the CDC/MDH guidelines

    5. There are no new recommendations to ministries, staff or Executive Council

  3. Property Updates on HVAC/Ventilation

    1. Waiting for additional quotes and bids

  4. Confirmation and SS support

    1. Mission trip preparation

      1. Still a go; waiting for Youth Works to share any updated information

    2. VBS still in planning

  5. Re-opening Matrix Discussion:

    1. Adding a Wednesday Service through August

      1. This will be streamed

      2. Outdoor once a month service and some Wednesdays

    2. Coffee social reopening in June!

      1. We need a process for treats:

        1. Snacks will be distributed from a service station similar to the Pancake Breakfast. Someone will ensure we use napkins to pick up items.

        2. Individually wrapped items are not environmentally friendly

        3. Buy store bought donuts/baked goods at Cub - open order for church. Station monitored by a monitored

      2. Coffee will also be available from a service station poured directly into cups instead of carafes on the table (like the pancake breakfast)

        1. Joe can share some notes from pancake breakfast

      3. We will plan for coffee outside as much as possible, but account for Inside as necessary;

        1. We will have tables outside AND inside to account for all tastes, but we will watch for usage and monitor feedback

      4. Lucy and Julie and team to work out the details and share for awareness

  6. Open Forum

    1. Vaccinated/Unvaccinated language

      1. While we used language from the MDH that points out the dual tracks of safety and welfare specific to vaccinated and unvaccinated guidelines, it is not our intention to police, restrict, judge or otherwise categorize the members or their decisions on how to show up going forward under the new recommendations.

      2. We will not police whether or not anyone is vaccinated; it is the honor system

      3. We will continue to record services for streaming and play- back for remote viewing

      4. We will continue to monitor feedback from the many moving parts of this pandemic, and some of these parts that were set in motion with not a lot of advance notice to allow us to fully think through everything for last Sunday.

    2. State of the Church Address (target May 23) to include a report out on the COVID/reopening plans.

  7. Cascading Message

    1. Share these notes with ministries, staff, volunteers and congregation

Thank you to tonight’s attendees: Pastor Jon, Joe, Lonna, Sharon, Lucy, Joan, Bill, and special guest Jane Ward!


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