Sent June 26, 2020.
If you’re a Westsider, I trust you’ve heard the news: we are resuming ON-CAMPUS worship this Sunday! And, if you plan to be with us, be sure to remember our revised start times: 8:30, 10:00 and 11:30am with traditional worship at 1:00pm.
If you haven’t seen my original campus reopening email from several weeks ago, explaining how we’ll organize on-campus worship during the next season,
here’s a link to it. Obviously, things are not “back to normal” when it comes to how we do church. However, we should celebrate the opportunity to begin the journey toward a complete reunion, even though none of us knows how long this
in-between will last.
TODAY’S VIDEO ANNOUNCEMENT
Please watch this VERY IMPORTANT VIDEO ANNOUNCEMENT from me and our team about what to expect/do when
you come to our campus to worship. To reduce confusion when you arrive, I’m asking you to watch the
entire video now, even if you suspect you know what info it contains (the video is less than 5 minutes long).
- If any of your children is younger than 8 years old, you’ll be directed to one of our family venues. If we’re unsure how old your child is, someone will ask. If you happen to make it into a main worship venue with a child who appears he/she may be younger than 8, we’ll likely ask.
- Trust me, we know all about the opinions and controversy surrounding MASKS. Still, we strongly recommend that masks be worn while in our facility. Our staff and volunteers will wear masks when possible. Why? To be as considerate of others as possible.
- Personally, if I’m in a public space and wearing a mask becomes problematic, rather than removing it entirely, I lower it slightly to keep it over my mouth while allowing my nose to escape for a moment. This allows me to breathe easier. Doing so is not the safest or recommended way to wear a mask, I realize. However, logically, I know that keeping a mask over my mouth only is better than opting to not wear one. By the way, no, we won’t wear masks while leading from the platform. But we will do our best to “distance” on the platform and place the front row of seats a good distance
from the platform.
- If you want to sing (or even lip sync, lol) in any of our on-campus venues, you’re
expected to voluntarily wear a mask over your mouth. Is singing with a mask uncomfortable and undesirable? Yes and yes. Is it important to wear a mask while singing to minimize droplets being projected into the room? Yes.
- We’ll be making a huge effort to seat households at least 6 feet apart. We want you here, but we want you safe.
Friend, if we all use hand sanitizer upon entering and after touching railings and doors… if we “distance” while enjoying conversation with others… if we avoid handshaking and hugging (sorry!)… if we wear masks, especially when talking and singing… we’ll enhance each other’s safety.
Let’s be realistic: it is possible someone will visit our campus who doesn’t realize he/she has COVID-19. A pastor friend of mine learned that an attendee at a wedding he recently officiated tested positive for COVID immediately after the event. However, because of the precautions my friend and others took while at the wedding, no additional attendees contracted the virus at the event. That’s how it should be.
A MOMENT OF BLUNTNESS FROM THE LEAD GUY
Frankly, this is difficult. The precautions and adjustments require much additional effort from our staff and volunteers. So, if you dislike all this stuff, we get it. It would be easier for us to continue to worship online until more of the precautions are unnecessary. However, we are on mission,
no matter what it takes. And we want to give returning to campus our best effort.
I know that if we adopt the right spirit and refuse to grumble, we’ll be able to say (Psalm 122:1),
I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD.” So, if you can come into a cautious environment and “go with
the flow,” I hope you will join us. If not, please continue to worship online. I
love you, either way, friend.
SEE YOU SUNDAY – MAYBE
Once again, if you’re in a vulnerable category of people, be wise and stay safe. We love you a lot and want you to stay healthy!
Please take a moment to watch the regathering video now!
Looking forward to Sunday,