We would like to update you on the work of our COVID-19 Task Force, which has been meeting regularly since March 2020, to work through multiple issues related to the pandemic and its impact on St. John’s.
One key issue has been in-person worship, which we resumed last fall on a limited basis. At that time, we communicated that we would limit worship to 25-percent capacity in our main sanctuary. Out of an abundance of caution and reflecting actual demand, attendance at our Sunday morning services was actually limited to 40-45 parishioners and a small worship party, which is well below the 25-percent capacity mark.
Until vaccines became more widely available, parishioners had been understandably hesitant to return to in-person worship, even with the comprehensive precautions and sanitation measures St. John’s implemented on our church campus. However, as we review trends in worship attendance, we have seen demand rising.
For that reason, we will be increasing maximum attendance to 75 congregants beginning this coming Sunday, March 14. This is still under the 25-percent maximum threshold approved by our COVID-19 Task Force, but it does mean you might see more people worshipping with you on Sunday mornings and at our upcoming Easter services, and we don’t want you to be caught off guard by that.
Of course, it goes without saying that everyone should be masked and practice social distancing during worship and while visiting St. John’s for fellowship and small group gatherings.
In the event that we reach the maximum attendance during a worship service, you may be asked to view a simulcast version of the service in Alfriend Hall. We thank you for your understanding as we adapt to fluctuating weekly attendance. As always, our Task Force consults medical professionals before making any decision on this or any matter related to the pandemic. Our concern is for your safety and comfort.
A reminder that seating at Easter services must be reserved in advance. This will be handled via online registration. That registration period begins this Friday, March 12 at 10:00 a.m. on our website.
If you have any questions, please reach out to our staff or clergy team.