An Update from Pastor Bob – May 24, 2020
“When will the church be open?”
I’m asked this question regularly. Like just about every other question we’re asking, this one is tricky, because there are a number of things we do at St. Mark, each of them asks people to interact in different ways. From letting staff work in the office to holding live worship services, we’re facing a number of different hurdles in moving forward with being together at our campus again.
Beginning June 1, the St. Mark council has decided to reopen our physical campus on a limited basis. What does that mean?
• Our offices will be open, but staff will still be working offsite for part of their time. As we begin, our office hours will be 8:00am-12:00pm Monday-Friday, or by appointment. Staff are being asked to wear masks and social distance in our workspace, and we encourage you to wear masks to the office as well.
• Some of our groups will begin meeting at that time depending on the ability to social distance and follow IDPH and CDC guidelines. Please check with the staff contact for your ministry area if you are unsure if your group will do the same.
• Many events have already been cancelled or become virtual this summer (ex. Vacation Bible School is virtual, Mission Trips are cancelled). Opening the campus does not change the status of these events.
• At this time, we don’t know when in-person worship will resume. The challenges to holding worship services which include singing safely, offering communion, maintaining social distancing into and out of the sanctuary, and cleaning properly between sanctuary uses means that what we could offer right now is not currently feasible. We will continue to wait for guidance as to when larger groups pose less of a risk, especially to our most vulnerable members.
This is the first step to our new normal. It’s important to note, the new normal will include livestream worship (https://stmarkwdm.online.church) every week, so you’ll be able to join us online whether you’re out of town or we can’t gather together. I hope you’ll Share Jesus Christ this week by inviting someone to join you online for worship this week!