COVID POLICY EFFECTIVE MAY 23, 2021
Consistory approved the following protocols for in-person church attendance effective
May 23, 2021. We appreciate everyone's cooperation as we move through this process in a safe and structured manner.
All worshippers over 5 years of age shall always remain masked inside the facility, covering nose and mouth.
We will reintroduce singing to the worship service. We would ask folks to be mindful of their neighbors and not to sing with full voice but singing will be permitted.
We will eliminate the unisex bathrooms and will return to a gendered setup per the normal.
Communion will remain in the pews with individual communion packets, distributed at the door.
Offering will continue to be collected at the door.
At this time, we will not open more pew seating. We advise congregation members to be mindful for 6 ft. social distancing from side to side.
While the CDC has certainly moved quickly to open things up, our intention is to introduce elements back to our in-person experience slowly but surely. We are trying to manage between those who would wish that everything was open and “normal,” and those who are still very wary of returning to any kind of large social environment. And, as always, our guiding principle remains “Love thy neighbor as yourself,” and doing all we can to ensure that our sanctuary is safe for everyone, particularly our most vulnerable members.
These protocols are subject to change as tMhe Transition Team and Consistory continue to monitor and assess the situation.
Mark Your Calendars
June 6 – Communion
June 6 - Congregational Meeting for WISE Vote (in-person and via ZOOM)
From the beginning of March, St. Mary’s has engaged in discernment around the WISE program. We’ve prayed, discussed, learned, and shared our way through worship services, book studies, listening sessions, and personal conversations. After several months of careful work, it is time for us as a congregation to decide to move forward.
We are pleased to announce a vote following our 10:30 worship service on June 6, 2021, to formally vote to continue the WISE process at St. Mary’s. The purpose of this vote is to document our willingness to move forward to “Phase 2” as a congregation. It is NOT a final vote to become a WISE congregation (not yet, anyway). Phase 2 will involve the process of writing a covenant, exploring community support and advocacy opportunities, and considering what programming could be housed or hosted by St. Mary’s in the future to meet these needs in our community.
The WISE team will make a brief presentation, as well as answer questions. In the interests of Covid safety we will try to keep the meeting as short as possible. If you have questions currently, please don’t hesitate to ask any member of the WISE team (Pastor Sam, Linda Matthias, Steve Matthias, Rachel Wagner-Hutchison) prior to the vote.
The easiest way to collect votes in a hybrid service arrangement is via Zoom. To that end, we will enable questions and voting via in-person and Zoom formats (please note – this vote WILL NOT be streamed via Facebook – a separate link is required). If you would like to participate via online/Zoom, you will need to register with the church office. Please call or email, and we’ll get the link to you as soon as possible.
In the meantime, continue to pray for God’s guidance as we seek to becoming WISEr and more loving towards our neighbors!
The WISE Team
Sound Board Training
Anyone interested in learning how to operate the Sound Board and technology for Sunday Services, please contact Rob Brown immediately! We need coverage for June 27th, and we would like to start training now. This is a great opportunity for tech savvy individuals. Please call the office at 410-346-7977 or email email@example.com if you have any interest in helping.
The Flower Calendar for the remainder of 2021 is open for sign-ups. It is so easy to donate altar flowers. Please call the office at 410-346-7977 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to claim a Sunday and provide the wording for your dedication. Call Bowman’s at 410-751-7290 (ask for Becky) or The Flower Shop at 717-359-4824 to order arrangements. They will deliver and place the 2 vases on the altar for you.
Spiritual Formation Update
Children’s Sunday School will be ending for the summer on June 6th. Join us virtually for a fun wrap-up to our crazy pandemic SS year!
Vacation Bible School
Save the Date!
We’d like to remind you that we offer electronic giving as a way to automate your regular offering. Electronic giving offers convenience and consistency and has been proven secure. You may choose direct debit giving from your bank account or use a credit or debit card. The plan is flexible; ranging from a 1-time gift to a regularly recurring transaction at your discretion. Online giving allows you to access our church website – www.stmarysucc.org – at any time to set up a donation plan, change an existing plan, make a 1-time donation or view your donation history. As you contemplate future contributions, please consider electronic giving. Additional information is available by contacting Sabrina, financial secretary.