As a community of Christians following in the way of Jesus, St. Mary’s United Church of Christ is committed to being a welcoming, safe, and nurturing environment for all. This is in line with our vision and mission:
Our Vision: To be a sanctuary for all God’s children, built up in Christ, established in faith, and grounded in love.
Our Mission: Cultivate…Grow…Renew
In keeping with our mission and vision, we the congregation of St. Mary’s U.C.C., adopted a Safe Church handbook to help ensure the safety and well-being of all who call St. Mary’s their spiritual home. While we recognize that we cannot eliminate all risks, we feel strongly that we can minimize risks. We encourage members and friends to familiarize themselves with these policies and expect all members, friends, and activity participants to abide by them. We also ask that outside groups that use the Church's facilities familiarize themselves with this document and expect their full compliance when using the Church’s facilities.
Click here for a copy of the Safe Church handbook.
Inclement Weather Policy
St. Mary’s recognizes that weather is a significant factor in personal safety. In the event of inclement weather, St. Mary’s follows the Carroll County Public Schools (CCPS) closing/delay/early dismissal system during school weeks. For instance, if Carroll County Public Schools are closed, St. Mary’s will be closed and all church-related and community events held at the Church are canceled. The same policy is in effect for early dismissals. If CCPS are in an early dismissal, all evening activities at St. Mary’s will be canceled. CCPS inclement weather decisions can be found in the following locations:
• Carroll County Times
For weekend activities and times when CCPS is not in session, decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis depending on the ability of property crews to clear the parking lot of snow/ice. Group and event leaders using the building on weekends when inclement weather is forecast or has arrived, are required to contact the event coordinator, property committee chair, or pastor to determine the suitability and safety to hold events at St. Mary’s. St. Mary’s reserves the right to cancel and postpone any meeting or event occurring at the Church.
St. Mary’s will make every effort to hold worship on Sunday mornings. St. Mary’s cannot guarantee that all parking lots, walking surfaces, and side-walks will be clear and free of snow and ice in all situations. Parishioners are encouraged to use their own judgement when deciding whether to travel to and from Church. In the event that the weather prohibits holding worship, the Church will communicate this decision in the following ways:
• A recording posted on the Church answering machine. Dial (410) 346-7977.
• Messages on the Church’s website and Facebook account.
Finally, the best way to think of our guideline is this: if you don't feel safe, don't feel obligated to make the trip!