Read the rest of the letter from the church council below - detailing the plan to reopen worship safely.
Dear fellow members of Messiah,
We rejoice with you that once again we can gather together to praise our Lord in His house! It has been a wearying 12 weeks since we were last able to worship in church, and now we have the go ahead from our government to do so.
However, out of love for one another we want to do it safely and lovingly. We know that many of our members are still hesitant to gather together to worship and would prefer for the time being to worship online. By all means, we understand! We want you to be fed with His Word and have the opportunity to respond in a way that fits this virus season.
We want to lay out for you the precautions and protocols that your church council has set up, so that you might make an informed decision on whether to worship in person or online. They are as follows.
1. We will limit worship to 70 people in the sanctuary, using a shortened order of service to limit the time spent inside.
2. We will hold services at 6:30pm Thursday, and on Sundays at 7:45, 9:30 and 11:00.
3. We will require pre-registration for attending, at least for June.
4. Hand sanitizer will be available. Bring your own if you can.
5. Worship area will be wiped down between services
6. We strongly encourage use of face masks for your fellow worshipers’ peace of mind.
7. Rejoice and encourage one another! The Lord has brought us through this.
1. If more than 70 members want to worship at a particular service, we can offer worship in the activity hall via video. We would keep the double doors by the kitchen closed.
2. Members attending in the church proper would enter through main entrance.
3. Members attending the activity hall service would enter through north entrance.
4. Every other row of chairs will be blocked off.
5. Families can sit together and asked to keep 3 chairs between them and a non-family member worshiper.
6. Worship areas and bathrooms will be wiped down between services.
If there are less than 50 at a service, we would not host the additional service in the activity hall. Number of services may be adjusted in response to the number of worshipers.
1. Full service bulletins will be printed. Hymnals will not be used for now.
2. For the time being, we will refrain from singing during the shortened worship service. We pray we can add them back in as wisdom permits.
3. Bulletins handed to members by an usher (One contact per piece of worship material).
4. Members encouraged to take bulletins home and dispose of them.
1. Offering plates placed on stands in entryway (just like our Thursday services).
2. Follow social distancing as you enter and exit the service. If the weather is nice, gather outside in the parking lot and catch up with your fellow worshipers as you social distance.
3. Your pastors will not wear masks during the service when they are up front, but will put them on when distributing communion, and before and after worship.
For communion: (June 4th and 7th only during the month of June.)
1. Pastors will wear masks when serving communion.
2. One table (10) at a time, with @ 6 feet between non-family members. We will utilize the entire front of the altar for 1 table.
If we have worshipers in the activity hall on a communion Sunday, we will do the following:
After the sermon and confession of faith, the preaching pastor leaves the main area and moves to the activity hall service, consecrates the elements at the same time as the worship area pastor, and distributes the elements.
We will also offer communion for groups of 10 or less at ½ hour intervals on Monday, June 8th from 10am-12 noon, and 6:00-7:30pm. Call the church office - 465-6013 - during office hours (Mon-Friday, 8:30 to noon) to schedule your communion slot.
How to register for worship
We know that a good number of our members don’t have the ability to register online. If you don’t have the ability to register online, call the church office (465-6013) on Thursday mornings from 8:30-12:00 noon to let us know what service you would like to attend that weekend.
Then, after 3pm on those Thursdays, we will open our online registration for everyone. Once a service has been filled, you will be able to choose another.
To register online, here’s what you do:
1. Go to our website - messiahgb.org
2. At the top of the page, click on the link “Register for Worship.” This will take you to Sign Up Genius registration form.
3. Once on Sign Up Genius, select the date and time of worship that you would like to attend (Thursday at 6:30 pm, or Sunday at 7:45 or 9:30 or 11:00 am).
4. Then click on the “Submit and Sign Up” button at the bottom of the page.
5. Then, enter the number of people (quantity) that you are signing up for in your household, your first and last name and email address. When filled out, click on “Sign Up Now.”
If you have any questions, please call the office - 465-6013.
Messiah Lutheran Church Council