Return To Worship – What To Expect

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Register For In-Person Worship – June 14th »

Dear church family,

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. (Colossians 3:12-14)

Throughout our adjusted living in this pandemic, it has been a challenge to plan long-term. Circumstance and situation in any location is fluid and requires flexibility. Yet, we navigate through it as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved. We develop plans and make decisions as people completely reliant on our God who never changes. We react to those plans entirely dependent upon the Spirit of God to fill us and show through us compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. We bear with each other, ever respectful of our brothers and sisters’ fears and concerns or comfort and ease. Above all, we put on the unconditional love our Savior has shown to us and that now shines through us in this unique time.

It is in that spirit that the leadership and I have spent considerable time reviewing and discussing the concerns and suggestions you offered at our request. Additionally, two conversations with Governor McMaster’s office have occurred to gather any further information that would benefit our careful planning. We continue to monitor and incorporate federal, state and local public health orders and guidelines.

We are sharing with you the plan our leadership has agreed upon and the precautions we will continue to take. We are a church. We cannot micromanage your individual decisions as you make godly and appropriate choices that reflect your comfort level. We will love, encourage, and support you. Most importantly, we want you to be strengthened and encouraged as we gather around Word and Sacrament.

The Plan

  1. Resume in-person worship on Sunday, May 31st, offering two services: 8:30 AM & 10:30 AM.
  2. Attendance will be limited to 45 people per service. Members will register online ahead of time for the service they plan to attend. The link will be provided via email and on the church website. We will do our best to accommodate and we appreciate your flexibility and understanding.
  3. We will continue to stream the entire 10:30 AM service.

Suspended Until Further Notice

  1. Bible Class and Kids GROW — We continue to encourage the use of Zoom Bible Study on Thursday evenings and online Kids GROW materials that will be posted on the church website.
  2. Nursery on Sunday mornings
  3. Refreshments and coffee
  4. Connect Groups

The Precautions

  1. We will use the main building entrance to enter and exit, but not linger in the Gathering Space or use it for socializing. Doors will be held open so that no one needs to touch the door handles as they come or go.
  2. Physical distancing will be encouraged and maintained in the building and in the rows of seats. Members of the same household may, of course, sit in close proximity to one another other in the same row, but if two households share a row, there should be at least six feet between the two groups. To accomplish this, the ushers will help seat you.
  3. The entire worship service will be printed in the worship folder for single use. You will pick one up on the table in the Gathering Space.
  4. Offerings will be placed in the basket at the back of the sanctuary.
  5. Friendship registers will not be passed out. We will encourage the use of the online connection card using your digital device.
  6. Holy Communion will be offered on Communion Sundays utilizing prepackaged wine/bread and continuous distribution. (More information will be forthcoming about distribution, flow, etc.)
  7. Worshipers will be ushered out at the end of the service.
  8. No children’s bags will be made available at this time.
  9. No Children’s Message will be included in the worship service at this time.
  10. If you need to use the restroom, please use the hand sanitizer that is located on the roundtable in the Gathering Space when you leave (as you would have needed to touch the door handle to open the door).
  11. High-traffic areas and touch points will be disinfected between services.
  12. We will maintain hand sanitizer dispenser(s) and have disinfectant wipes on hand. The hand sanitizer is medical grade. Chris Baker, manager of Bass Pro Shop, shares, “Please be aware that it stains the carpet and will eat through the wax on the floors.”
  13. If you want to visit with fellow worshipers, please do this outside in the open air before you enter the building prior to the beginning of the service, or after you leave the building following the end of the service. It is important that there be no congregating of people at the entrance to the building or in the Gathering Space. We have plenty of grass and asphalt space.

What Should You Do?

  1. When you come to worship, please respect the physical distancing guidelines. We will be happy to see each other again, but now is not the time to greet one another with a holy kiss, handshake or hug.
  2. You are welcome to wear a mask or other PPE, if you are comfortable doing so. We respect one another’s decision to determine what they feel is appropriate. PLEASE! PLEASE! PLEASE!… dispose of your PPE properly.
  3. Continue to practice good hygiene, especially when washing your hands.
  4. Continue to use common sense. If you are sick, have any of the symptoms of COVID-19, are at high risk of serious illness, or are uncomfortable attending services at this time, please stay home and utilize the livestreaming option for worship that will be available during the 10:30 AM service.

Finally, perhaps it could go without saying, but we will not let it: exercise Christian love, care, and common sense. Each of you has your own cares, concerns, and thoughts about the pandemic and reconvening. We are brothers and sisters in Christ who have longed over these past two months to gather in God’s house and be encouraged by one another. Perhaps more than ever, we have the incredible joy and privilege to do what the Apostle Paul encourages, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. May God grant this in us and among us as we walk back through the doors of his house to be fed by him and an encouragement to one another!

Safe in His keeping!
Pastor Zahn

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AMAZING GRACE LUTHERAN CHURCH

2240 CAROLINA FOREST BLVD / MYRTLE BEACH, SC 29579