Our Response to COVID-19

Our Response to COVID-19

Updated May 29, 2020

To the Southwest Congregation,

We hope that each of you are doing well, and to those of you who have been able to begin meeting together with us for services at the building in the past few weeks – it has truly been a blessing to worship together and fellowship together again in person.  Many of you have a need to be cautious in light of COVID-19 and are continuing to take advantage of the streaming of services and Bible Classes that are available online, and please know that we are praying for you and looking forward to meeting together in person with you soon.

As we continue to monitor the virus situation, including the various government updates and the multitude of media reports, we have decided to move forward with the following changes to our services:

Beginning this Sunday 5/31, we will resume Sunday evening worship services at the regularly scheduled 6:00pm start time

In part, this change is in reaction to the recent CDC report which clarified that it is much less likely that COVID-19 is transmitted due to surface contact

  • In addition, we are also making the wearing of a facial mask at all services optional, beginning this Sunday
  • Also, beginning on the following Sunday, 6/7, we will resume Sunday AM and Wednesday PM Bible Classes, but with a few key modifications:
    • The Auditorium classes will resume as per normal, both Sunday 9:30AM and Wednesday 7:00PM
    • However, for kids’ classes, we are planning to use the following approach – at least as an interim plan for the month of June, to be re-evaluated after that:
      • We will hold kids classes in the Annex only, and for the following 2 groups of kids:
        • One side of the Annex will be a combined class for 6th grade through 12th grade
        • The other side of the Annex will be a combined class for 4yr old through 5th grade
      • For kids younger than 4 years old, we are asking that parents keep those children with them during the auditorium class
    • This approach will allow us to maintain the necessary spacing for social distancing, but will also enable us to return to holding classes for most ages

Other than the above changes, we will keep the same guidelines in place for any congregational services or activities at the building:
Anyone who feels sick, or has symptoms associated with COVID-19, has a fever, etc. should stay home and take advantage of the online streaming of the worship services

  • Those members who know they are in a high-risk category for COVID-19 are encouraged to self-isolate, and can take advantage of the online worship services, or meet in the annex for worship streaming where it will be less crowded. High-risk categories should be considered to be those noted by medical studies from reputable sources, but are commonly reported as age (>65) plus one or more of the following factors: diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, lung conditions, obesity, and anything that compromises the immune system such as treatments for cancer.

We continue to remind you that anyone with questions is encouraged to contact one of the elders.  We recognize that this is a difficult situation and are trying to provide as much information as possible to help members of the congregation make good decisions.  We truly do covet your prayers, and are very appreciative of the cooperation from the congregation, and your understanding, prayers, and encouragement that you have given us as we navigate this unusual situation!  Please continue to contact one of us or the office if you know of any member who needs assistance or if you are aware of any benevolence or evangelism opportunity that we can help with at any time.

In Christ,

The Southwest elders