The Reunion Update (Latest Update: May 17, 2020)
With Governor McMaster’s announcement ending the stay at home order, we will be cautiously opening our worship services on campus starting Sunday, June 7. We will have 3 phases as we begin to gather again. When you decide to gather with us in person again, we will be very excited. For those of you who are high-risk, have underlying health issues, not feeling well or would like to worship at a distance for a little while longer, we encourage you to continue to watch us via live stream instead of in person. Worship will look a little different as we will be taking precautions and practicing physical distancing.
Phase 1 (June 7-30)
- Sunday Morning Worship Service will be ONLINE ONLY via live stream.
- We will meet for Sunday Evening Worship and Wednesday Night Bible Study.
- Vacation Bible School will be cancelled.
- No childcare. (Cry Baby Room with TV will be available. Ask an usher and they will direct you to the room.)
- No Sunday School.
- No Small Groups.
- No choir.
Phase 2 (July 1-31)
- Everything in phase 1 will remain the same in phase 2 except the following…
- Sunday Morning Worship Service will be added back.
Phase 3 (August 1-31)
- We will try to resume as normal. We will review this phase before August arrives.
What Will Services Look Like?
We will follow and strictly enforce all of the safety guidelines that has been provided. It is very important for us to remain 6 feet away from each other. You will see signage all around campus, please obey them. We will sanitize the campus before every worship service. Before you leave your home, take a moment to evaluate your health. Please, take your temperature. If you are running a fever, if you do not feel well, if you think you may have been around someone who has been exposed to COVID-19, please stay home and watch us via live stream.
We encourage that you wear a mask or other face covering upon entering the building. We will have a limited number of masks available when we get our shipment in. Wearing a mask shows our love and consideration for our neighbors. We are told to “love your neighbor as yourself”, Luke 10:27b and “love does no harm to a neighbor”, Romans 13:10. Let us practice being good neighbors by protecting others. While we are asking all family members to wear a mask, we understand those under 10 years of age may have difficulties with this. For those 10 and under, a mask is highly encouraged, but understood that it might be hard for them to wear one. We will have a “mother’s room” with a TV so you can watch the service if needed. Just ask a usher and they will direct you there.
We will have the back parking lot blocked off and all doors other than the front entrance locked to reduce touches and areas that have to be sanitized. Everyone should enter in at the front doors as we will have them propped open. The kid’s ministry hallway will be blocked off. Please enter the front entrance and continue into the sanctuary to find a seat. Do not stop. Every other pew will be blocked off. We will have ushers help with seating if needed. In order to practice social distancing, we will have family units spread throughout the entire sanctuary. Please sit 6 feet apart from other families. You will more than likely not be sitting in your favorite pew. A limited number of people can be accommodated, and you may be asked to move to another pew before the start of the service for social distancing restrictions.
We know at East Side, hand shaking and hugging is our second nature. We know it’s going to be difficult not to, but please refrain from hugging or shaking hands. While we have missed having physical contact with others, we will still be practicing social distancing. Let us give a friendly smile with your eyes or a wave instead. Please, do not congregate in the foyer.
During the offering time, we will not pass the offering plates. The ushers will keep them and not hand off the plate. If you have a offering, please make it noticeable to the ushers and they will safely get to you. We encourage you to continue to use our online giving on our website or app.
We will also have a controlled dismissal. Please wait for the usher to dismiss your row. Pews will be dismissed from back to front to avoid passing too close to people seated. When your row is dismissed, please proceed to the back of the sanctuary and immediately exit the building through the glass doors and disperse into the parking lot. Do not congregate in the foyer.
How Can You Pray?
The uncertainty of this outbreak is creating anxiety in our workplaces, schools, and day-to-day activities. Yet we remain certain of God’s steadfast presence and careful attention to all that is happening. Please join us in praying for those who are affected by this illness, as well as their caregivers and those who are working around the clock to minimize the impact of this virus.
2 Timothy 1:7 says, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” As believers, we can trust that God brings triumph in our trials. As believers, we have the authority through Christ to pray against the spread of any disease and to pray for healing for those who have the Coronavirus.
- Begin your prayer time by praising God for his sovereignty. He still is and always will be in control of all things. Pray that we will trust Him to help us navigate this season of uncertainty.
- Pray for wisdom for governmental leaders, the CDC, researchers, other medical personnel, and leaders in churches and other strategic places to respond wisely and appropriately.
- Pray for the protection of doctors, nurses, crisis response teams, emergency first responders, researchers and other medical professionals who risk their lives to protect ours.
- Pray for comfort and healing for those affected by the virus.
- Pray that we would be proactive in proclaiming the gospel and share the good news of Jesus Christ. Pray that this event would be a catalyst for revival in the upstate of S.C. and around the world.
We will continue to communicate updates on the coronavirus via our church communication software and our Facebook page. Sign up for text, phone calls, and email now if you haven't already.