Stay Connected at Grace During COVID-19

Dear friends,

This has been an unprecedented and challenging time for our country, our community, and our church family. As part of our community, and out of concern for those who are most vulnerable, we have worked hard to follow God’s word and respect the authority that God has placed over us while following the guidelines they have asked us to implement. Now that the stay at home order has been lifted and a stay safe order is in place, we wanted to communicate our plan for reopening Grace Chapel.

Our first service back in the sanctuary will be May 31st. We are excited to be back together, but our services will be a little different. Our service times will remain the same, 9:30 and 11:00. As the state recommended guidelines change so will our approach to our Sunday morning worship experience. On May 31st your entire family will worship together. It will be similar to Christmas Eve. Our children’s ministry will provide pre-packaged snacks and activities for our kids, and our services will be kept shorter…I promise.

As we reopen, we will also be following all the suggested CDC guidelines. This week our staff and leadership met with the Warren County Health Commissioner to help us minimize the risks. I know we all have opinions and feelings about our current situation, but we are asking that patience and a love for our church body would rule in each of our hearts. Our goal is to minimize the risk for those in our church body and to love each other well. For those who are sick or showing symptoms of being ill, those who have chronic conditions, or are over 65 and are at higher risk, we will continue to offer live online services. The goal during this time is to provide a clean, safe experience while following the recommended guidelines for social distancing. The Health Commissioner also recommended that families take their temperature before coming to service and wear masks while inside the building. As we return, we are asking everyone to please avoid congregating in the foyer, or in other designated service gathering spaces. Our team will also be following CDC guidelines for cleaning the church and will have plenty of hand sanitizer available. I know this next recommendation will really disappoint many of you, but for now we will not be serving coffee and donuts on Sunday mornings. When Communion is observed, we will use pre-packaged containers found on tables for personal pickup.

We are excited to have the opportunity to worship together on our campus, and we pray that God will continue to give our leaders wisdom as they make these difficult decisions to move us safely forward. Please remember that unity in the body is a priority. Psalm 133:1 says, “How good and pleasant is is when God’s people live together in unity!” Christ calls us to impact the lives of those in need even during times such as these, so we cannot allow the enemy to drive a wedge between us. This will be a sacrifice for each person who calls Grace Chapel home, but my prayer is that we come out of this crisis even stronger. May God bless our efforts to love one another and serve Him.

Serving Him together,
Pastor Jeff