Hello Church Family!
I am delighted to bring you some VERY exciting news, which will really ease some folks’ anxiety, and help to make everyone comfortable returning to Church!
In Job 11, we read, “If you direct your heart rightly, you will stretch out your hands toward him… And you will have confidence, because there is hope; you will be protected and take your rest in safety.”
The dictionary defines Sanctuary as:
- a holy and sacred place, to worship in
- a place of safety and immunity
We want to ensure that when people come to Glen Abbey United Church, they are absolutely confident that they are worshipping in a place of safety.
To achieve this goal, your Re-opening Committee, with Board approval, is responsibly putting in place the following policy:
Effective September 19th, ALL staff and congregation entering the Church for worship, must provide proof of full vaccination, or alternatively a negative COVID-19 test completed within the past 72 hours. Unvaccinated children, under the age of 12, may enter provided they are accompanied by fully vaccinated adults.
You will only have to provide the proof of vaccination one time, as you will then be designated as immunized on a master list. A new negative COVID test would have to be produced every time. The live-stream of the service is an option for those who cannot attend in person, and the technical aspects will be improving as time goes on.
While full vaccination of everyone present will greatly increase our level of safety, we will also continue to practice safety protocols, such as wearing masks, hand sanitizing and physical distancing. Singing and Sunday School will return when it is deemed safe to do so.
We respect concerns about individual privacy, so your proof will be seen, but not kept.
There are 3 easy ways to provide the required proof:
- Bring your receipt from your second vaccine shot, (more than 14 days ago), on a Sunday morning, to be confidentially viewed and checked off, on the list. Please bring it this Sunday, if you are able, to reduce check-in time on the 19th. If you can’t locate your paper receipt, you can download it from the email you received from the Ministry of health or from https://covid19.ontariohealth.ca/
- OR, email a copy of the PDF dose administration receipt we received from the Ontario Ministry of Health, regarding the second shot. Please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org
- OR, drop into the Church office on a weekday morning and confidentially show it to Pat.
We realize this may be seen as a bold move, but we take seriously our over-arching responsibility to ensure the safety of the congregation and staff. During September, as weekly attendance is traditionally lower, we will not be requiring pre-registration to attend services, as your attendance will be noted upon entry, for contact tracing. As attendance climbs closer to the limits with distancing in place, we will let you know when pre-registration will be reinstated.
We look forward to seeing everyone in our safe environment, where we can join together as a Church Family, free from worry! Thanks be to God!
Rev. Ted Vance,
on behalf of the Re-opening Committee and the Glen Abbey United Church Board