Responding to COVID-19
June 28, 2021
Dear Northminster Family,
On the same day we emailed the guidelines for Northminster’s in-person worship, the CDC announced new guidelines stating that fully vaccinated people no longer are required to wear masks or socially distance in most places. Businesses, government, educational and medical facilities may still require masks. There may still be some who choose to wear their masks in any setting, and those individuals should be respected and supported in their choices. Vaccines are now available for anyone over twelve years of age. Though children aged 12-15 are now beginning to receive the first dose of the vaccine, we still must protect our children under age 12 until such time as a vaccine is available for them. The expert recommendations include all (over age 2) who are not fully vaccinated, for whatever reason, wear masks and socially distance while in public to protect themselves and others in similar circumstance. We are recommending that this recommendation be followed at Northminster for all in-person gatherings.
With our in-person worship services resuming, and in view of the new CDC guidelines, at Northminster, updated guidelines are as follows:
The sanctuary will be arranged to accommodate all ages. The lectern side will remain with normal seating for fully vaccinated individuals with optional masking while seated. The pulpit side will have designated social distanced seating and be reserved for those who are either unvaccinated or still prefer to wear masks and socially distance. The congregation is welcome to sing but only with masks on.
We ask that everyone continue to wear a mask when moving about, ie; entering and leaving the building, walking in hallways or other areas, moving about the sanctuary to read or during communion. Those in the socially distanced area should wear masks at all times whether vaccinated or not. In accordance with CDC guidelines those who are not fully vaccinated should wear their masks at all times for their protection and the protection of other unvaccinated persons including our children.
Guidelines for Staff, Choir Members, Worship Leaders (Greeters, Readers, and Communion Servers—
All persons singing in the choir at rehearsal and during service must be fully vaccinated
Masks will be worn during procession and recession but once seated for the service may be removed. Procession and Recession will be as usual, i.e., two by two
During communion, masks will be worn except while partaking of the elements.
Worship Leaders (greeters, readers, and communion servers)
Must be fully vaccinated
Wear mask while greeting, serving communion, or moving about sanctuary. Masks may be removed to read and replaced afterward.
Except for these changes the previous guidelines will remain in place. Please remember that we must continue to be vigilant and commit to keeping all ages of our congregation safe. We look forward to seeing you Sunday.