ADVENTELC'S PLANS TO WORSHIP IN-PERSON!
Worship Services Starting July 5, 2020
at 8:30 & 11a.m.
In-Person Sunday School is still suspended
However Virtual Learning Continues!
3660 Kenny Road, Columbus, Ohio 43220
| Tel: 614-451-3639
We are EXCITED to announce that in-person worship services are ready to resume, beginning Sunday, July 5 at 8:30am and 11:00am.
With the anticipation of reestablishing public worship, we must do so in a way that does not irresponsibly place the health of people in danger. We are still learning about the COVID-19 Coronavirus. We have seen its tragic force in the death of so many people. We pray for all those who have died these months as well as for those who mourn.
We have also seen heroic efforts by those particularly in the healthcare field but so many others who in invisible ways have provided for our needs. We are all united in sincere gratitude for the work and the sacrifices of these people.
We continue to pray and give thanks for those who have prudently guided us through these difficult times at the national, state, and local levels, as well as the ELCA, and our Bishop and her staff of the Southern Ohio Synod. I am also very thankful to our leadership here at AdventELC who have prayed, discussed, debated, researched, and prayed some more as to when and how we are to come back to in-person worship services. And I am sincerely thankful for each one of you who have adapted and continued to actively worship, do ministry, and support AdventELC as we continue to strive to see Christ clearly and make Christ clearly seen.
As one public official stated, the COVID-19 Coronavirus will be with us for a long time and we need to learn how to live with it. Many of the dangers of gathered assemblies remain. The measures proposed in our guidelines and the work that is being done here at AdventELC will help to mitigate those dangers to some degree. Cognizant of your many sacrifices, I ask for your continued patience and flexibility as we begin this process of the return to public worship.
Outlined below are guidelines for what we are looking to do. Our Worship & Witness Team has spent multiple hours toiling over methods and procedures to ensure the balance between what is right and good, and what is healthy and a positive worship experience.
Please be respectful of the guidelines for social distancing and please understand that when the church has reached capacity allowed for health and safety reasons, we cannot admit any more people under any circumstance. If need be, our staff is ready and willing to add a third worship service time to our schedule to meet the demand if and when necessary.
We ask that if you are classified as “high risk” or if you are showing any signs of illness, please stay at home and worship with us online. Those who are “high risk” are especially those highly susceptible to COVID or those who manifest symptoms of COVID. Those “susceptible to COVID,” include those over the age of 70 or those who have serious health conditions. Symptoms include a cough of any kind or a fever. Those who are “high risk” are especially cautioned to avoid public gatherings, including coming to church until it is safe for them to attend.
If all of this sounds a little overwhelming, don’t worry. We have procedures and people in place to help you through this. We are a church family and we are here for you. If you have any issues signing up for a seat in worship, give us a call. If you would like to talk through things, about coming back to worship, or just about life, feel free to contact me and our staff.
We were incredibly energized seeing so many of you for our Easter and Pentecost Drive In services. We cannot wait to see you face to face starting in July. We are aware that everyone’s level of risk tolerance is different. Please go at your own pace. If you feel it is best for you to stay home and worship with us online, please know that we look to bring you the same level of excellent worship that you experienced and come to expect in these 112 days. For those of you who are ready, willing, and able to meet in person again, we look forward to seeing you face to face again soon.
Worship Service Sign Up
Members, friends, and visitors of AdventELC must reserve their seats to attend an in-building worship service. This is for both the parish and parishioner. If you do not have a reservation for a worship service and there are no seats available you will be turned away from the building for that particular time of worship. We do not want to do this. But we will, in order to keep everyone safe as well as maintain order and fairness. A link for this sign up/reservation will be provided on our website (AdventELC.org/reopen), weekly email newsletter (E-herald on Fridays at noon), and social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter). If someone is having trouble making a reservation, they are asked to contact the church office at 614-451-3639 to talk to Mary Garland or leave a message which will be returned for help and/or confirmation.
All are welcome, Some should stay home
Per the Ohio Department of Health Director’s Stay Safe Ohio Order, elderly people and those who are vulnerable as a result of illness should take additional precautions. According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a federal agency) those at high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19 include people who are sixty-five years or older and people of all ages with underlying medical conditions, particularly if not will controlled, including:
People with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma;
People who have serious heart conditions;
People who are immune compromised;
People with severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 40 or higher);
People with diabetes;
People with chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis; and
People with liver disease
We ask that everybody take their temperatures at home before coming to worship. If you have a fever of any kind, please stay home. If you are suffering from a cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, chills, unexplainable muscle pain, sore throat, or a new loss of taste or smell, please stay home.
The building at 3660 Kenny Road will be opened at the main entrance only. The congregation is asked to enter and exit by those doors only. All doors that will be used will be propped open. The flow of traffic allows us to maintain only one entrance/exit. Of course, in case of an emergency, all exits are permissible to use.
Upon entering, if you have a coat, you are asked to keep it with you in the pews, as the coat rack will not be available for use.
Masks are mandatory for everyone. If you do not have one, AdventELC will supply one for you upon entry. Cloth masks are preferable. You are asked to wear it the entire time you are in the building, with the exception of partaking in the Sacrament of Holy Communion. Refusal will result in a request to leave. This is an issue of fulfilling our Lord Jesus’ command to “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:36-40).
Pastor Aaron, Jean, and the Assistant Minister will not wear masks while in the chancel area or pulpit, but will at any time they enter the nave or narthex.
The Staff at AdventELC has physically and virtually mapped out a seating chart so as to maintain social distancing that will be arranged by individual, couple, and family groups. In short, a family of five may sit next to each other in the same pew as a unit and still maintain a mandated diameter of 6 feet from the next group or individual.
Utilizing a color coded system and with the help of trained ushers, seating should be simple and streamlined. Chances are you will not be sitting in "your regular seat." Sorry about that.
At the end of the worship service, you will be dismissed by rows by the Assistant Minister (think of what some do at weddings). Please do not rise to leave until instructed.
Bulletins will not be printed for congregational use. A link is provided weekly on our website (AdventELC.org) which members can (1) print them off at home, bring them, and take them home with them, or (2) pull them up on a mobile device to use on site. We do have WiFi at in the building.
The elements of the service, including hymns, will be projected on the wall behind the altar for the congregation to easily follow along.
Holy Communion will be offered at each of our in-person worship services unless we run out of supplies or regard for safety has been lowered to an unacceptable level by the Pastor.
Congregants will pick up the elements for Holy Communion from the Narthex on their way in to worship. The elements consist of a wafer and pre-filled grape juice in a plastic container that is individually sealed from the manufacturer.
You will not leave your pews to take Holy Communion. The Pastor will consecrate the elements using the Words of Institution from our liturgy and as an entire congregation will take communion together, as instructed by the Pastor.
If you or someone in your family does not take Holy Communion and would like to receive a blessing, we invite a family/same household member to trace the sign of the cross on that person’s forehead with a blessing (i.e. May the Lord bless you and keep you and know that God loves you very much.)
It is important to note that if you are in need of a gluten free option, those can be obtained upon entry. Please see an usher for more details.
After the worship service concludes, as you make your way out of the building, please take the empty cup and plastic from the Communion vessels with you, which we then ask you to throw away using the trash can provided in the Narthex.
According to experts singing and the playing of a wind instrument initiates a spread of aerosol and droplets and poses a strong risk of infection.
On May 5th, an expert panel assembled by the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), Chorus America, the Barbershop Harmony Society, and the Performing Arts Medical Association (PAMA) stated that singing is among the riskier behaviors when it comes to spreading droplets/aerosols which can carry the virus a significant distance and remain suspended in the air. A cloth mask is unlikely to be enough to protect you or your neighbor. In short, "No Vaccine, No Safe Public Singing." See their webinar here. Additional resources mentioned in the webinar: Future of Singing PDF, COVID 19 & SINGING - Research Articles & Guidelines List
With all this in mind, when we begin in-person worship again our singing will be limited to the the leaders only. We encourage you to explore other ways to participate: for instance, clapping (clap on beats 2 and 4), or moving in rhythm.
Many of you have been consistent and generous givers to the mission and ministry at AdventELC. We especially thank you for your giving in this unprecedented time. We encourage you to continue to give online as it is the safest way to give. If you would like to offer checks, an offering plate will be provided in the Narthex. Please no cash offerings at this time, for the health of our counters. The offering plate will not be passed around the congregation.
Materials from the worship and gathering spaces such as bibles, hymnals, pens/pencils, information cards, children’s bags, etc. have been removed. Please refrain from handshakes, hugs, kisses, elbow or fist bumps, etc. during this time.
The Children’s Sermon will be done without the children coming forward.
The water fountains will not be permitted for use and coffee service has been suspended.
It is our hope that you will use the restroom on a limited basis only. Respiratory droplets are not the only way to transmit coronavirus.
After each and every use, the restroom will need to be sanitized for the health and safety of all. In order to reduce exposure, need for personnel, and cleaning materials, we ask that you only use it when absolutely necessary. If you use it, you are asked to sanitize the fixtures using the materials that are provided in that particular restroom.
Sunday School and Nursery
There will be no in-person offerings of Sunday School or nursery until further notice.
3660 Kenny Road
Columbus, OH 43220
Sunday Worship Services @ 8:30 & 11 a.m.