In-Person Worship

We are excited to restart in-person worship services on July 18 and embark on the journey towards ‘normal’ church activities!

That being said, we recognize there will be mixed feelings as our faith family gathers, especially regarding appropriate conduct for physical distancing, mask wearing, and the like. The coming weeks and months will require everyone to be kind and hospitable toward each other while also being open and honest when feeling uncomfortable.

To give a sense of what Sundays will look like as we gather, we share the following:

1) Per BCs Restart plan, masks are recommended for people aged 12+ while indoors until they are fully vaccinated (that is two weeks after their second shot). We encourage you to follow this advice. This also means that some of you will be wearing masks and others of you will not be. Please honor each other and the choice of whether one is wearing a mask or not.

2) While we acknowledge this will be difficult, we encourage you to limit your physical contacts, such as handshakes, hugs, and the like. This is not a hard and fast rule so much as an encouragement to be aware of each other’s boundaries and concerns at this time. We will not be including a “Mutual Greeting” in the services for the time being to avoid people feeling obligated to give and receive physical contact. Neither will the offering plates be passed through the rows.

3) Initially, we will not serve any food or beverage for sharing. If you want a hot drink or snack, you may bring your own.

4) The rear Eastside of the sanctuary will be reserved for persons who wish to remain masked and do not wish to sing in order to provide extra protection for themselves. You are asked to leave that area for those who have health concerns and wish to create an extra bubble around themselves. Parents, please talk to your children about this area and its restrictions.

5) There will be Sunday School for young children beginning July 25. As before, lessons will be targeted for children age 8 and younger, though parents may choose if they want to send their children to Sunday School. Clipboards with an activity sheet will be available for children to use in their seats.

6) Please be social after the service! We know that sounds odd and not an issue for many of you, but all of us tightened our social circles over the last 15+ months. Please be ready to work on growing your connections and deepening your relationships.

7) If you are not comfortable coming to in-person worship, we hope to continue livestreaming the service on the church’s Facebook page. It will be different than the controlled studio space of the pastor’s office. There will likely be technical issues, especially the first few Sundays. We hope to continue livestreaming permanently for those unable to attend in person, outreach purposes, and those who wish to watch the service over again. 

Restarting in-person church activities will be a process. We pray you will engage in this process with patience, understanding, hospitality, and eagerness. Please pray for and support us as we navigate through this transition and find our footing in this future together.

In Christ,
Pastors Mike and Jana Vander Laan