March 13, 2020
We are in a season of much anxiety and uncertainty regarding the pandemic virus, COVID-19. As other organizations are taking precautions and making preparations, churches are also having to make plans for adjusting our schedules and routines and for caring for one another.
In an effort to minimize risk of spreading infection and to protect the most vulnerable among us, we will be making a few minor adjustments to our Sunday morning schedule and service this Sunday, March 15th:
- We will NOT have our 9 am coffee/tea/conversation time in the Fellowship Hall. While this is a great time of fellowship, it is also a context in which there is a great deal of contact and touching of shared items. Eliminating the coffee hour will not have a major impact upon our Sunday morning schedule, but it could reduce the risk of contamination.
- We will encourage everyone to refrain from hugging or shaking hands. Smile, wave, give a thumbs up; find ways to greet one another that do not involve physical contact.
- We will not pass the friendship registries or the offering plates. Again, this is an effort to reduce physical contact. We will offer several alternative methods for giving an offering:
- Give online at www.fbcpendleton.org (choose “give now” from the menu) OR onrealm.org/fbcpendleton/-/give/now
- Text the word FBCPENDLETON to recipient 73256.
- Bring your offering forward and place it in the offering plate on the altar during the offertory.
- As you leave the sanctuary at the end of the worship service, a deacon or usher will be at each door with an offering plate where you may place your offering.
In addition to these adjustments, please continue to practice the healthy habits that are always advisable to minimize spread of illness:
- If you are not feeling well, please stay home! This will help protect others from getting sick who may have more serious health complications. If you are scheduled to volunteer to do something at church, we would rather have to make other arrangements than to risk spreading illness.
- WASH YOUR HANDS! Wash your hands when you arrive at church. Wash your hands after touching your face. Wash your hands after using the restroom. Wash your hands after using a tissue. We will have hand sanitizer available as well, but due to limited availability of sanitizer, and the fact that soap and water are more effective at reducing germs, please WASH YOUR HANDS!
We will continue to monitor the situation as it progresses and make additional adjustments to our church schedule and routines if necessary. We are also in communication with other local agencies regarding how to help those in our community with limited resources who may be most adversely affected by illness, school closures, loss of work, and other possible consequences of this pandemic.
In these uncertain times, may we continue to remember…
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. (Psalm 46:1)
With Peace and Hope,
Pastor Jennifer Rygg