Another milestone that our church needs to meet in order to resume in-person worship service relates to our facilities. In a previous post we explained how cleaning will take place and mentioned other considerations related to our facilities such as air quality. Here we would like to explain additional ways the physical building will be adapted to mitigate health risks.
What is our objective with this milestone?
We hope to provide clear, visible directions for those that return so that entering, worshiping, and departing may take place in an orderly and safe fashion. This includes clear and visible signage, conveniently placed sanitizer stations, and a thoughtful implementation of physical distancing.
What has the church done or planned in order to meet this milestone?
Our team has mapped the traffic flow for Sunday worship and begun to place arrows on the ground to outline the path. Members will enter through the main entrances and walk directly to the worship service. Departure will take place by another route, exiting through separate, side doors. Rooms that are not in use will be inaccessible.
We have also marked seats in the worship service so as to maintain physical distancing. Pursuant with county guidelines, we also plan to mark parking spaces with cones in order to maintain physical distancing in the parking lot as well. We have considered common surfaces and objects at risk for handled by multiple people without disinfecting. Objects that can be removed, such as hymnals and pens, have been placed in storage.
Sanitizing stations have been purchased. Sanitizer refills have also been ordered, so that the stations can be reliable and available for use.
What else should members know about this effort?
We are currently focused on preparing our facilities for in-person worship service. Other usages are currently outside of our scope as we work towards the initial re-opening. We expect future iterations and changes in order to accommodate Sunday school and fellowship groups, for example. There will be future changes to provide a space for discussion and interaction. However, we have not yet planned for congregating and socializing, and ask church members initially to be deliberate as they enter and exit, so that we minimize contact outside of service and between language groups for health reasons.