|June, 17, 2020|
Dear CtL friends,
You’re in my prayers often. I miss seeing all of you but I know we are still together, apart, as brothers and sisters in Christ. Thanks to Zoom, I’m enjoying being with all the Council members weekly as we’ve been managing together the constantly evolving Covid-19 situation. And, that’s why I’m writing to you…
As you’ve heard from Pastor Mike, we’re preparing for our first step at in-person worship in the midst of a global pandemic this Sunday, June 21 at 9:00 am. It’s important you’re aware the majority of Council members believe it is too soon for in-person worship. And, Bishop Hutterer of the Grand Canyon Synod has advised against it (click here for her letter).
But as your Council, we’re responding to your direction provided in the survey that a majority of you want to have in-person worship.
We will continue to produce a full online worship experience with liturgy and special music for the foreseeable future.
The COVID-19 trends in Arizona are more and more alarming. As I write this on Tuesday, the Arizona Republic stated: “Arizona reported a record-high 2,392 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday and hospitals reported record numbers of patients as the state continues to grapple with a relentless increase in coronavirus spread. Inpatient beds for patients with suspected and confirmed COVID-19 hit a record number Monday, with 1,506 inpatients…ICU beds in use, ventilators in use and emergency department visits for COVID-19 all reached record levels Monday as well.”
“Tuesday marks the first time the state has reported more than 2,000 new cases in a single day, per state data. Previously, the record was 1,654 new cases reported on June 12.” Click here to see a simple graph that tells the story.
Steps are being taken to make this first in-person worship as safe as we can by following guidelines for safety as set forth by the CDC. But, please know, despite our best efforts, we cannot guarantee this will be 100% safe.
As Pastor Mike highlighted, no one is under any obligation to come just because it is available. If you feel you are at risk for any of the reasons you’ve heard and read about, please don’t come. And, we’re nearly all in a high risk category, including myself. In fact, because of that, Jim and I won’t be attending in-person. If you are still sheltering in place and taking minimal risks, please don’t come. If you’re not sure you should, please don’t come. And most especially, if you have been exposed or are in any way symptomatic, please don’t come.
If you are planning to attend, please make sure you bring a mask and hand sanitizer, and review the video on the website so you know the necessary precautions to take before coming and what to do when you arrive.
For example, everyone must wear a mask the entire time and keep it over their face. And, the bathrooms off the Narthex will be out of service. Bathrooms are a particular problem to clean and sanitize between each use. So we recommend that you not use them at all if avoidable. There are two bathrooms suitable for individual use in the education building across the breezeway. We ask that you follow a few precautions to protect yourself and the next user, which are posted there.
Also, the video will prepare you for a significantly modified in-person worship experience, with no singing, more along the lines of our Conversation & Communion service.
Yes, it’s all new! Your safety and welfare and that of your friends at CtL, and the friends and family with whom you will come in contact after such a worship experience, are our highest priority!
Please reach out to me anytime via 203-733-0822 or this email address. You and your families are in my prayers. Be safe, be healthy, be in the Lord.
|Your sister in Christ,|
President, Church Council