Dear Church Family,
We were encouraged by the 273 member responses we received to the Preston Road Reopening Survey. As you might expect, the opinions about when and how to safely resume in-person gatherings are varied, with no clear consensus, except that we all miss meeting together and are eager to do it wisely and well.
Upon the recommendation of the Preston Road Reopening Task Force, our student and young adult ministries are already beginning to meet again in small groups with strict safety and sanitation protocols. We encourage other informal small groups to explore safe and appropriate ways of meeting together for social gatherings, while following the guidance of public health professionals, including maintaining social distance while wearing a face-covering.
We’re also making preparations for resuming our in-person worship gatherings later this summer. These preparations will include a training session for our staff, elders, and volunteers, as well as a focus group-type pilot service. We’re continuing to closely monitor local data and despite the recent increase in daily cases, our task force is hopeful the two key metrics of hospitalizations and ICU admissions will both show a decreasing trend over the next month. We hesitate to declare a specific date for reopening, however, as our final decision will be data-driven, rather than date-driven.
We have learned some helpful lessons from our friends in other churches that have already reopened. They have shared with us their challenging experiences, and in a few cases, disappointing setbacks. We believe our patience and prudence will be rewarded with a safer and overall more edifying experience when we finally do come back together again.
In the meantime, our ministry staff will continue to work hard at producing meaningful online worship experiences. We’re blessed to have Mike Cope, from Pepperdine University, filling in for Wade, who will be out for the next three weeks for his usual summer break.
As always—and we never tire of saying this—we appreciate your persistent encouragement, prayers, and generosity. Please let us know how we can best pray for and minister to you.
The Elders and Ministry Staff