Are you prepared for the new normal?
As the world adapts to the challenges of the Covid-pandemic, we will have to get used to the new normal. The same is true for us as a church family @ IBCB.
Churches have been granted permission by the state to once again meet for public worship as long as they meet the stringent requirements to prevent the further spread of Covid-19. So, we’re making plans to re-open, but be forewarned — things will not be the same. We’ll have to get used to a new normal for the near future.
Oh, there will be the familiar elements of worship with which you are familiar. We’ll enjoy Singing, Scripture reading, a Sermon, and the Supper. We’ll actually get to be in the same room with each other and enjoy the warmth of physical presence. However, in order to comply with current health guidelines, it will happen in a different context. Here’s what you can expect:
- A maximum number of 50 worshippers are permitted; therefore, advanced registration for attendance is required
- Names, phone numbers and/or email addresses of all attendees will be collected and kept on file for four weeks
- Participants are required to disinfect their hands at the door upon entering
- A minimum distance of 1.5 m from other people must be maintained at all times, though families/households may sit together
- No physical contact with non-household members is permitted
- Participants should wear a mouth-nose cover/protection [please, bring your own]
- Enter through the main doors and exit through the door behind the stage [i.e. the door on the right]
While we’re eager to see each other again, please, help us be good stewards as we help control the spread of the virus. If you are sick – i.e. fever, cold-like symptoms, or breathing issues – do not come! If you are in a high-risk group – or someone in your household is in a high-risk group, please, stay at home. If your children are not able to maintain the social distancing requirements, do not bring them. [We are not providing for any Kids Ministry program on-site.] We encourage you to take advantage of our online church offerings for worship, fellowship, and instruction.
To help us get ready to reopen the church doors for worship, we need a couple of things from you. First, what time is the best time for you to attend public worship at Rothenburgstrasse? We will not be able to meet at 12:30 h because our host church has changed their schedule. Please, complete section 1 of this survey to let us know the best start time for a one-hour, on-site public worship service.
Second, what time is the best for you to participate in online worship? For technical reasons, broadcasting a recorded worship service with live hosting support – it’s called “simulated live” – is preferable to live stream. Additionally, would you participate in an online sermon discussion group? We’d like to encourage the disciple-making fellowship of discussion, sharing, and praying in a post-worship, interactive ZOOM meeting. Help us as we make plans to continue and improve upon our online worship experience and increase our relational connections by completing section 2 of the same survey.
This next week, we’ll have the results of the survey, finalize decisions, and make plans that will be communicated in next week’s eNotes. If you have any questions or comments, please, let us know. If you have any ideas or suggestions about how we might maximize our experience of “physically distanced and masked” worship, please, let us know.
Covid-19 has forced us to adapt to our changing world. One thing we can count on for sure: our ever-present and faithful God who offers himself to us in love, grace, mercy, and strength. With his presence and guidance we will experience new depths of the hope … the glorious future … he has in store for us as his people, a future where we will be together, with him forever.