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Spring 2022 – Regathering for Worship

Emmanuel Church Regathering – Spring 2022

Please note certain restrictions still apply to Emmanuel Church as a member of the Diocese of Maryland. Currently, we are operating the the “Post-COVID” Green Phase, which you may see described on the Diocesan Website. Please note that we will continue “to take baby steps” as we relax restrictions on our worship practices, so not all Diocesan permissions will be taken up at once.

General Caveat: Though the Test Positivity rates and the Case Rates per 100,000 for the SARS COVID 2 virus continue to vary widely from week to week, we will make every prudent attempt to offer in-person public worship at Emmanuel Church on Sundays, and to make our space available to outside groups for their use. The church staff and all who participate in organizing and leading worship are fully vaccinated and boosted, and are required to certify this to the Rector, and the Rector to the Bishop. We continue to hold to the policy of not checking vaccination status for people who attend worship. That said, we believe strongly that vaccinations are the best way we know how, during this time, to “Love your neighbor as yourself.” The choice to remain unvaccinated (save for specific medical reasons, certified by a person’s general practitioner) is contrary to what we believe to be our responsibilities to families, friends, neighbors, and the community in which we live. The Rector is ready and willing to discuss these assumptions with anyone interested. Within the bounds of activities permitted by the Bishop, final decisions about worship and property use are the responsibility of the Rector.

Sunday Worship

Please note that we will continue to webcast our services on our YouTube Channel for the foreseeable future.

  • Congregation members and guests are welcome to worship with us at 8:00 AM for a service in Traditional Language, and at 10:00 AM for a more contemporary service.
    • No reservations are required
    • Social distanced seating, mandatory mask use
    • Congregational singing is now permitted, on the condition that worshipers keep their masks on the whole service; cantors and choir members will soon be unmasked while singing and be at least 12 feet from congregation members, and other chancel participants
    • Holy Communion: wafers only, distributed by gloved hands
    • Communion cups still available for home use, and can be picked up on Saturdays, from 10:00 AM to Noon, and can be made available in other ways by request

Baptisms, Weddings, Funerals

  • Private services for these events are currently permitted. The number of persons who can attend is, at this point, limited by the most current information about Test Positivity rates and Case rates available.

Building Use:

  • Negotiations may begin with outside groups immediately
    • Social Distancing and Mask Use to be determined by groups, using the >90% vaccinated standard
    • Restrictions on food and beverage service apply:
      • No “self-service” beverages (i.e., people getting their own coffee from a common urn)
      • Only pre-packaged, single-serving food items. Exception: things like donuts or slices of cake may be served if prepared and plated by one person and served in a socially distanced way.
      • Masks may be removed for eating drinking, but must be replaced after finishing
      • Set-up and clean-up procedures to be reviewed and approved, including cleaning of bathrooms

Church Meetings:

  • In person meetings are permissible
    • Consensus on masking and social distancing, based on >90% vaccination norms
    • Suggest the possibility of alternating between in-person and electronic meetings
    • Investigate the possibility of a permanently mounted screen/camera in the Parish Hall to facilitate electronic/hybrid meetings

Tuesday Morning Eucharist:

  • Suspended until further notice