COVID-19 

 
 
1.  The Session is NOT requiring masks be worn for public worship.  
Our decision was largely influenced by the fact that Bay County is not a coronavirus hotspot and that our community has been intermingling in various stores now for a couple of months.  What this means for you is:  if you are uncomfortable with a worship experience with no masks, we would encourage you to join on Facebook or Youtube until you feel comfortable with maskless corporate worship.  Please be assured everyone will understand.  
 
2.   The sanctuary chairs are further spread apart.
Although all rows have been spread further apart, please note that the first four rows, along with the front side wall seating, are spread even further apart.  There is also specialized seating in the rear of the sanctuary.  For those, particularly the elderly, who may desire to sit further apart from your fellow worshiper, these sections are there to accommodate you.
 
3.  Special entrance accommodation for the more vulnerable.
If you are 65 or over or have a compromised immune system, we will have the single entrance/exit door on the north side of the platform (at the northwest end of the sanctuary) available for entrance and exit.  This entrance will lead you straight to the chairs which are spread further apart.  This is provided for your safety and convenience.
4.  The Fellowship Hall will be open to accommodate infants and small children.  
The Nursery nor Sunday School will NOT be operating until later notice.  To accommodate families we have opened up the fellowship hall with a wide screen where crying babies or younger children may be better accommodated, especially during the sermon time.  Keep in mind that we are now livestreaming our services to those on the outside so we appreciate your help especially with our precious infants or toddlers who are crying.
 
5.    We are still implementing safety precautions.
First, if you have had any of the following symptoms for the past ten days, PLEASE have you and your family stay home this Sunday and next Sunday:
a.  fever within the past ten days;
b.  coughing;
c.  trouble breathing;
d.  loss of taste or smell; or
e.  a sore throat.
We will have forehead touch thermometers onsite but will NOT require our own members to be monitored.  We are counting on you to self-govern in these important ways.  Out of an abundance of caution, any fever over 100 in the past ten days by anyone in your family should keep you home for two Sundays.
Second, for visitors we will be asking them a short list of questions, with particular attention as to whether they have exhibited these symptoms above but also as to whether they have traveled to or from a national hotspot or been out of the country in the past 14 days.  If so, they will be asked to wear a mask.  
 
Third, please be aware the CDC still encourages the 6 foot social distancing recommendation.  However, we will not be policing how you freely interact with others.  We simply ask you use common sense and don’t assume everyone is OK with breaking the 6 foot recommendation.  
 
6.  The building will open to most at 10:20 a.m.
The grounds will obviously be open as early as you want to arrive but feel free to come at 10:00 or so and congregate in the grassy area in front of the church for fellowship.  Yes, we will have coffee!  The musicians, ushers, and some officers will need to be in the building earlier than that but this will keep our closer social distancing minimized inside the building.  After the service we will ask you to immediately exit the building and converse outside in the grassy area as well.  We are sanitizing the building as best we can.  
 
7.  Foyer, Bathrooms and Sanctuary Seating Social Distancing
Please do NOT stop in the foyer.  Consider the foyer a “pass through zone” until this pandemic is over.  Also, try to keep the bathrooms to only a few people at a time, if possible.  May we encourage you ALL to use the restroom prior to coming, if possible, to help reduce the overall need.  Also, families are to sit together.  There is no perfect system in all this but do your best to observe the 6 foot rule.  As families, look for those you have been regularly interacted with in recent days and sit closer to them, 6 feet apart if you can.  [We know what you’re thinking!  Just do the best you can.  It won’t be perfect.]  
 
8.  Parents, Your Children Need to Stay with You in the Building at All Times.  
Please prepare them for this.  This is an additional reason we will have the grassy area open for conversation before and after, as well as the fellowship hall open during the service–to help relieve some pressure on you.
 
9.  Promote the peace and unity of the church.
During times like this everyone has an opinion about what should and should not be done.  Let us extend grace and understanding to one another.  Satan would love for God’s people to grumble and criticize one another in all of this.  We should all take this with the seriousness it deserves but at the same time let us remember that the latest CDC fatality rate is estimated to be 0.40% to 0.26%, depending on which way you measure it.  That means that 99.60% to 99.74% do NOT die if they get infected with the coronavirus.  
 
10.  Wash your hands!  Cover your mouth if you cough or sneeze!