Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
Below is the current summary of the weekly update from the Diocese of Maryland. As we watch the numbers week to week I will be discussing with our vestry what would be the best way for Christ Church to proceed. I miss having people present, but as you will see, there will still be limited seating, socially distanced. I also think we need to be more specific about masks: K N-95s, and double masking encouraged. Although March 7 is under discussion, most public health officials are suggesting Holy Week (March 28 – April 4). Feel free to call our vestry, officers or me with any thoughts you might have. As I have yet been able to schedule a vaccine, I will be leaning towards the greatest dimension of caution until I can do so.
Stay Calm. Stay Connected. Stay Church. And Stay Safe. We can get through this together!
Yours in Christ,
Fr Kirk, Priest in Charge
Summary Recent Update from The Diocese of Maryland
Indoor public worship and limited building use may resume March 7 th
…if local numbers remain at a lower level. What you need to consider:
If you choose to regather indoors, you still need to be prepared to
reverse course in a week’s time if a spike occurs. The new variants can
spread more quickly and cause spikes more quickly.
Maximum allowable seating capacity for each individual congregation is
to be based on a formula for local case rate and average ceiling height.
Some level of risk will always be present. Congregations needs to assess
their own level of risk. Many of our scientists have recommended that
the earliest we should consider regathering indoors is in Holy Week,
assuming no spikes from variants.
Inoculated persons may still be infectious to others.
Consider requiring double masking/use of N95s because of the variants
Current allowance goal has been under 5% positivity rate, under 25 for
new cases per 100,000. Much safer is under 3% and under 10 (where
we were in the summer and early fall). This is why we have created a
customized formula for maximum seating capacity.
Windows will still need to be open. Heat turned off. Communion will be Bread (wafer) only distributed at the rear of the church. No singing will be allowed. No Coffee Hour allowed.