In-Person & Online Worship Logistics
**Email email@example.com to receive the weekly emails** to the congregation that contain the zoom link to the worship service, the link to RSVP to the indoor worship services, order of worship, announcements, etc.
Update as of May 16, 2021
We rejoice that in God’s providence our state and nation have become substantially safer as regards possible exposure to the novel coronavirus. While we work to update safety policies for worship, we can at least clearly state that when coming to outdoor worship, you no longer need to wear a mask (or other face covering) unless within six feet of persons from another household. Masks are still required in the building. (But only those over the age of five ever need to wear masks.) Please do continue to bring masks, and to lovingly care for those among us who need to be careful. You are, of course, welcome to wear a mask whenever you choose. But we look forward to seeing your smiles!
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD! ”
We rejoice and praise the Lord that we can again gather together in person and on a simultaneous livestream of that service via Zoom (if you choose to stay at home, as might be wise to protect the health of yourself or others). Whether you remain at home or come to Good Hope’s backyard, we look forward to all worshiping together.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another:
just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.
By this all people will know that you are my disciples,
if you have love for one another.”
Love for one another is the key element as we meet together in person for worship. It will truly be delightful to be in each other’s physical presence again, but there is likely to be some frustration, too, with additional measures taken to increase the safety of attendees during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our motivation for these measures isn’t principally self-protective fear, but loving others by significantly decreasing the likelihood that a presymptomatic or asymptomatic COVID-19 carrier will infect others. (i.e. Even if I don’t mind getting the virus, if I do have or get it, I’ll likely spread it, now or later on. Love seeks not to carry COVID-19.) And we’ll surely adjust our plans for future worship, as we learn from our experiences.
Commitments in Coming
We hope that you can come to the outdoor services. If you choose to do so, out of love for one another, you commit to:
- Take the temperature and evaluate any symptoms of each family member that morning before coming, staying home if any illness is suspected.
- Bring and wear face masks or other effective face coverings (except for children under age two; parents should make reasonable efforts to help children ages two to nine wear masks). This is especially important when not able to distance well, such as while everyone is arriving before the service and departing afterwards, or if using the restrooms in the building. During the worship service, while in your selected seating area, well distanced from neighbors, you may remove your mask for singing or discomfort.
We recognize that congregational singing is an activity of greater risk, yet it is an essential element of worship. This is a principal reason we’re meeting for outdoor worship: the vast volumes of outdoor air, combined with air movement and extra distancing, quickly dissipate aerosols. Nevertheless, some may wish to be among others who always wear masks; they should sit towards the back and sides of seating areas. If you feel safer still further away, there’s a lot of space, and the speakers are quite audible.
- Seek to maintain six-foot distance from other households when interacting before and after the service.
- Oversee your children, to help them follow these guidelines.
- If later diagnosed with COVID-19, report that to Good Hope (firstname.lastname@example.org), so that the Session may act appropriately (notifying those who attended that someone was diagnosed, and those who were near you of their closer exposure), while keeping your identity confidential (unless you specifically request congregational help or prayer).
Things to Know and Bring
- If forecasts show weather on Sunday during worship probably being inclement, we will cancel the in-person service by Saturday noon (announced via email and goodhopepca.com), reverting only to online worship via Zoom at 9 AM.
- The revised Sunday School is posted in the weekly congregation bulletin.
- Bring your own chairs and/or blankets and set them up on the grass behind the building, with a view of the deck, and at no less than nine feet distance from your neighbors, using flagged locations as a guide. We will place flags at thirteen-foot distances from each other, allowing a flag-centered 4’x4’ square for seating of a group of two adults and a couple of children (probably outside the square, but who sing with much less airflow) with nine-foot distancing to the adjacent groups. Larger families may occupy two such flagged spaces.
- Bring your own preprinted order of worship with hymns (or devices to view them, being mindful of bright sun).
- Take account of weather forecasts and bring hats, beach umbrella (be considerate of neighbors), sunscreen, water, chairs, and blankets/tarps (the grass may be damp from dew), as appropriate.
- For now, we will forgo nursery, and in-person giving (tithes and offerings may continue to be mailed to Daric Bossman or conveyed electronically through the PCA Foundation linked to our homepage.
- We will reserve parking spaces on the long side of the gravel parking lot next to the grass for those who wish to remain in cars for greater distancing or effective corralling of young children, and invite reservation requests at email@example.com.
- We will reserve a seating area near the driveway circle (under the three trees near and behind the deck; look for caution tape and signs) for those less physically able.
- In general, the building will be open only for restroom use (upstairs, accessed via the Fellowship Hall). Please don’t gather there.
The LORD loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwelling places of Jacob.
Glorious things of you are spoken, O city of God.
We look forward to seeing many of you in person at worship each Sunday, and many others via the Zoom meeting.
The Session of Good Hope Presbyterian Church