July 12, 2022
Summer 2022 Update
Dear Beloved in Christ,
As we mentioned in our last COVID-19 update back in March, the leadership of the church continues to monitor the COVID-19 metrics and evaluate our mitigation strategies. On Sunday, July 10, the leadership met and made the following adjustments to our policies:
- Effective immediately, we are recommending masks be worn in the building, but do not require them. We encourage you to gauge your own risk of COVID and make decisions accordingly. If you are not vaccinated, please continue to wear a mask (after all, no one wants to get sick, even if it isn’t COVID).
- We will continue to ask that if you are feeling ill you remain home. If you need to be at church, please take an at-home test to determine if your symptoms are due to COVID. If you test negative, you may come to church, but we ask that you wear a mask.
- We will no longer require you to sign in to worship either via paper or on your smartphone. If we need to notify people of possible exposure, we will use our email list and send the notice to our whole congregation.
These changes do not mean that the pandemic is over. Far from it. But, we have many layers of protection available to us that were not available before. If you are fully vaccinated and received your boosters, your risk for developing severe cases requiring hospitalization is significantly reduced. New treatments for the disease further reduce this risk.
Last fall we purchased and installed two high-powered medical-grade air purifiers in the sanctuary. These purifiers are certified to remove the COVID-19 virus from the air and can do a complete air exchange of our sanctuary every 30 minutes. This allows us to keep the windows closed during cold weather.
We will continue to monitor the trends and alert levels, and may need to return to requiring masks should the “Community Level” returns to Red as defined by the CDC.
Of course, we will continue to live stream all of our worship gatherings, so if you aren’t feeling well, or if you aren’t ready to worship on-site and in person, you can find our worship on Facebook, YouTube, and at http://thelordshipchurch.org/live.
We thank you for your continued flexibility in this fluid situation. We will make it through, working together as we love our neighbors.
In Christ’s Service,
Sally Green, Moderator & Chair of Executive Board
The Rev. Jeff Lukens, Pastor
COVID-19 Worship Guidelines
Please take some time to familiarize yourself with the following information on how we will all do our best to meet as safely as possible out of love for one another.
Masks are recommended for everyone who attends worship, indoors or outdoors.
Please stay home if any of the following apply:
If you are feeling ill at all.
If you have knowingly been exposed to anyone with COVID-19 in the last 10 days and have not been tested.
We ask that you please sit together with your own household.
We will email the bulletins out ahead of time as we have been doing, and we will have a small stack for self-pickup. Use the same rules as with food at coffee hour – you touch it, you take it.
We will not be passing the offering plate. We will have one available to drop your offering in or you may give online at https://thelordshipchurch.org/donate.
In order to limit access to the restrooms in the building, please use the restroom before you arrive. The restroom by the parlor will be available for emergencies. We will limit restroom access to only one person at a time.
Frequently Asked Questions
What if I don’t feel comfortable returning to in-person worship yet?
Please do not feel pressure to return to our worship gatherings until you are ready. You know your situation best and we fully respect your decisions about gathering together.
Will worship still be live-streamed or recorded?
Yes. We will continue to live-stream and record our worship services as we have been doing. You will be able to watch worship on our website, and on YouTube and Facebook. No account is needed to watch worship on any of these platforms.
Who should stay home from worship?
If you or anyone in your household have any symptoms of any illness please stay home. If you have knowingly been exposed to anyone with COVID-19 in the last 10 days, please do not attend unless you have received a negative COVID-19 test after 5 days.
Why are masks still recommended?
The coronavirus spreads primarily through aerosolized respiratory droplets traveling from one person to another. Wearing a mask is the most effective way to protect yourself and others around you. While we no longer require everyone to wear a mask, they are still recommended.
How can I give for the offering?
We will not be passing the offering plate. There will be an offering plate at the back of the sanctuary for you to place your offering in, or you may continue to give online (https://thelordshipchurch.org/donate) or via text message (475.800.8860).
Is there a chance we will have to return to requiring masks or even suspending in-person worship?
Yes. The situation continues to be very fluid and many factors could cause us to require masks or even move online again, even for a brief time.
We will be continuing to monitor the situation in Stratford, Fairfield County, and the State of Connecticut, and if the situation warrants, we will adjust accordingly.