June 17, 2021
Dear SPC Family,
Thank you for continuing to be a supportive and loving community during these challenging days. We rejoice that vaccination rates are moving us ever closer to putting this pandemic behind us! But this time of in-between—of opening up, and still not quite on the other side of things—can be really hard. Everyone is navigating their own comfort levels and vulnerabilities, while also very much longing to just be done with it all. Please know that the church is a place where we can support one another along this sometimes bumpy road, even when we are at different places along it.
As we map out our own reopening steps as a church, we continue to be mindful of the most vulnerable among us. So we are being intentional about our welcome to our youngest children and others who cannot be vaccinated yet, as we also move forward into the joy of brighter days.
This letter summarizes the Session’s most recent decisions. Please feel free to contact the church office with questions or feedback.
1. We will continue worshipping outside through Sunday, July 4th (unless it rains or is very hot, in which case we will move into Fellowship Hall for worship). Masks will now be optional for adults who are fully vaccinated when we worship or gather outside. Children may follow the masking guidelines established by New York State for outdoor play at school. Of course, all are welcome to continue wearing a mask according to their own comfort level. Live streaming will be available for those more comfortable worshipping from home. Refreshments may be enjoyed outside following the service.
2. For the hottest part of the summer—from Sunday, July 11th through Sunday, September 5th—we will worship most Sundays in Fellowship Hall, with live streaming available. As of now, because not everyone in the congregation is vaccinated, and we want to continue some singing, masks will be required when we worship inside. Refreshments may be enjoyed outside following the service.
3. Our summer Sunday services will be briefer (30-45 minutes), as is currently recommended when worshipping inside.
4. Committees or groups of 12 or less may remove masks and enjoy refreshments while meeting inside the church building if all present are fully vaccinated. Those entering the church building on weekdays who are fully vaccinated may remove their masks, unless gathering with someone who is not fully vaccinated. Please continue to reserve space for your meeting/gathering through the church office.
5. We will return to the sanctuary on Sunday, September 12th!
As guidance changes, we will communicate updates. Thank you so much for your continued grace with us and with one another.
Your SPC leadership and staff