The Reopening Task Force met on August 30 to review church protocols regarding Covid safety. Although Covid is still with us, and will remain a concern for some time to come, we were encouraged by the high rates of vaccination in our community, the levels of immunity from prior infection, and the current low rates of transmission in Middlesex County. The task force reviewed the most recent CDC guidelines and public health recommendations, the newest guidelines from the Lincoln Pubic Schools, and the imminent prospect of an updated immunization booster. The Task Force appreciates that individuals in our community may have differing risk tolerance and differing ideas about optimal policies for the Church. Overall, while we recognize the ongoing health risks associated with Covid, we see this time as an opportunity to return to a more normal way of being together, while respecting that people will make individual decisions regarding levels of participation.
As before, the Task Force will meet on a regular basis, and may modify these recommendations at any time based on new developments.
The Task Force has proposed the following protocols for the start of the church year:
- There will be no limits on the numbers of worshippers in the Sanctuary, although people are encouraged to spread themselves out.
- Individuals attending in person worship are strongly encouraged to be up to date on their vaccinations.
- There will be no need for prior registration for attendance at in person worship.
- Masks are expected for individuals attending in person worship, but not at other times.
- Children are welcome in the Sanctuary during worship, and children age 2 and over are expected to wear masks.
- Masks are optional for those persons singing in the choir, with an expectation that those who choose to sing unmasked conduct a rapid Covid test prior to the service or rehearsal.
- Hospitality will take place as usual, and outdoors when possible.
- Sunday school will be mask optional, and parents are encouraged to insure that their children are vaccinated.
Andrew Clark, for the Reopening Task Force