Dear Algiers United Methodist Church Family,
I hope this letter finds you healthy in body and well in your spirit. As you know, I have been meeting with the chairs of our administrative committees to discuss returning to in-person worship. After reviewing all of the guidelines set by our denomination, the CDC, and the state fire marshal, we have decided to resume in-person worship THIS Sunday, June 21st. Gathering together for worship has been long anticipated, and I’m eager to see you again!
If you choose to join us for in-person worship, know that things will look a little different than what we are used to. We ask all worshipers to come with a mask to wear for the duration of our time together. If you do not have a mask to wear or if you forget yours at home, we’ll provide a mask for you. At this time, we will not be serving Holy Communion, singing as a congregation or choir, having a nursery, offering food/coffee, or hosting in-person Sunday school (it will still be on Zoom at 10AM). In order to minimize risk, the offering plate will not be passed (it will be placed by the entrance/exit). We also ask that the children remain in their seats for the Children’s Moment.
The sanctuary will be open 15 minutes before worship to begin seating worshipers. Upon entering the building, a volunteer will direct you to the designated seating areas where each family unit will be seated a minimum of 6 feet away from others. We will gather, pray, read scripture, listen to music, receive a Holy Word, and dismiss safely.
If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, if anyone in your household or any of your close contacts have been diagnosed with COVID-19, or if you have been experiencing any symptoms of illness such as a cough and/or fever (however mild), please refrain from attending our in-person services. Doing so puts your other fellow sisters and brothers in Christ who are present at risk of becoming infected.
Also, it has been recommended for individuals who are 65+ years old or individuals with underlying health issues to continue remaining at home. However, anybody fitting this criteria is, of course, free to make their own decision.
We will continue to offer our worship services live on Facebook each week at our regular worship time and will be available on our church website on Wednesdays – www.algiersumc.com. So if you fit into the above categories or feel safer at home, please join us online for worship from the comfort of your own home.
Finally, I ask you to extend grace and exercise patience with your leadership, our volunteers, and myself during this time. We are in uncharted territory, but we’ll find a way together.
Grace and peace,
Rev. Colleen Bookter