Greenwoods Community Church Worship Gathering Guidelines June 2021 – revised
Now that Massachusetts has significantly relaxed its COVID-19 mask requirements and related coronavirus precautions for fully vaccinated people, Greenwoods is revising its worship gathering guidelines to take full advantage of the newly available flexibility, while also reflecting the State’s simultaneously issued advice regarding appropriate precautions for the unvaccinated.*
Our goal is to provide a worship environment that will encourage as many members of the congregation as possible, whether or not vaccinated, to be comfortable gathering for in- person worship. We need to emphasize, however, that there is no way to avoid the need for unvaccinated and otherwise vulnerable members to make their own decisions about the risks they are willing to accept when they come to worship with us. The Greenwoods family includes, and will presumably continue to include, a mix of vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals. We know that unvaccinated individuals are attending our services, and are aware that a number of them may well decide not to wear masks or to socially distance regardless of our guidelines. We urge any unvaccinated or otherwise vulnerable members to take this potential exposure into account in deciding whether they are comfortable worshiping with us in person at this time.
1. All fully vaccinated worshipers are now free to go without a mask and to dispense with social distancing when sitting or otherwise interacting with other fully vaccinated worshipers, and with members of their own household, whether or not vaccinated. (We encourage any vaccinated worshipers who wish to remain masked to continue to do so.)
2. All unvaccinated (or not fully vaccinated) worshipers are asked to wear a mask, and to observe standard social distancing protocols except when sitting or otherwise interacting with members of their own household. This will help to limit potential virus exposures for other unvaccinated or high-risk individuals.
3. No attempt will be made to determine the vaccination status of any worshiper, or to enforce the provisions of guideline #2 above. This is between each of us and our brothers and sisters in Christ.
4. Congregational singing will be encouraged, following the above guidelines regarding masks. Vaccinated worshipers are free to sing without masks; unvaccinated worshipers are asked to keep their masks in place while singing.
5. Children under five need not wear masks, regardless of their vaccination status.
6. Hand sanitizer and masks will continue to be made available.
7. No food or drink is permitted in the sanctuary.
8. For the present:
- All parts of the church facility other than the sanctuary and the front bathrooms will remain closed except to those on official church business.
- No Sunday School or nursery care is being provided. Children must remain in the sanctuary under the supervision of an adult.
- Fellowship meals will remain suspended.
9. We will continue to livestream our worship service each Sunday. If you are not feeling well or prefer for any reason not to attend in person, please take advantage of this remarkable technology to join us from the convenience of your home.
We’re heading in the right direction. Let’s all head there together.
*Complete details on the new state and CDC guidelines can be found at https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-mask-requirements and by following the various links provided there.
In His Grace,
Pastor Trip Weiler & GCC Elders
(Mike Conlogue, Geoff Drury & Jesse Midwood)
Greenwoods Community Church
phone: (413) 229-8560