Re-Opening Our Church For Sunday Services
As you might expect, plans for Sunday services are fluid, depending on changes in governmental guidelines and the success of various options we are trying. The best way to keep up to date is to watch for our blast emails or call the church office for current information.
After the success of our Drive-In Services on May 31st (using loud speakers and an FM radio transmitter to car radios) we are now beginning Pentecost in the Parking Lot – our outdoor services for the four Sundays in June. June 7th will be communion Sunday (using individually packed juice/wafers). We will continue to have two services - 9:00 am, and 10:30 am. We have plenty of room for all who wish to come to the outdoor services. We will have chairs set up (please bring your own bed sheet to cover your chair for extra safety) or you are welcome to bring your own lawn chairs if you wish. We will continue use of our FM transmitter for those who would like to remain in their cars for the service.
We plan to move back into the sanctuary beginning 4th of July weekend. Capacity at our services will be limited by governmental guidelines and the necessity for sanitizing between services. Under the current guidance, we can accommodate between 35-42 people for each service in the sanctuary. Right know, we plan to go back to our normal service times of 8:30 am and 10:45 am but, of course, that could change.
Both for outdoor and indoor service you will need to:
- Wear a mask;
- BYOS - bring your own bed sheet - one per person, any size (to cover your seat in a chair/pew then take with you when you leave);
- Bring your own Bible if you wish- we will not be using church Bibles or hymnals.
- Do NOT wear gloves. We will squirt your hands with hand sanitizer as you enter.
These precautions are mandatory for everyone’s safety.
Ushers will direct you where to sit – even families must social distance from each other to avoid impacting surrounding chairs/pews.
You may put your offerings in a marked container as you enter a service, or you can mail them to the church. As you might expect, it is still costing money to run the church, even though we have not be holding in-person services. In fact, some of our costs have gone up due to precautions we are taking for your health.
There will be no nursery or Children’s Church until further notice. Children are welcome at our services (which will last about 45 minutes) as long as they can social distance or be held by their parent(s).
Should you attend a service and then become ill with something that may be the coronavirus, please notify the church office immediately so we can support you through prayer, and notify our members.
We will continue to post Sunday sermons on our website smbts.org and Facebook@StMatthewsByTheSea for those who are more comfortable remaining in solitude a bit longer. Both your physical and spiritual safety are important to your church family!
Many are working diligently to make our transition to a new normal possible. We ask for your patience, flexibility and kindness.