Below is the text of a letter currently being mailed to members and attenders of the Paxtonville United Methodist Church.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Dear Friends of Paxtonville United Methodist Church,
I greet you in the name of Jesus Christ, our Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and Prince of Peace (Isaiah 7:9).
On May 13, the CDC released new public health recommendations indicating people who are fully vaccinated are no longer required to wear a mask or physically distance themselves when indoors or outdoors. The guidance provides recommendations for addressing how fully vaccinated people can safely resume activities, approach domestic and international travel and, manage isolation, quarantine, and testing.
The PUMC Governing Board also met on May 13 and discussed the CDC’s changes and their impact on indoor worship at PUMC. After discussion and prayer, the Governing Board adopted the following changes to our building guidelines:
- Indoor facility use at PUMC will operate based on the CDC’s masking and distancing recommendations for vaccinated people and unvaccinated people.
- COVID-19 and its variants are still a concern; for this reason, we strongly encourage everyone to continue making wise and safe health decisions for themselves, for those who are not vaccinated, for those who cannot be vaccinated, for the immunocompromised, etc. In the building, unvaccinated people should still wear masks at this time.
In addition, we are pursing a gradual change to worshipping guidelines as we monitor the spread of the virus under these new conditions.
- For three Sundays up until June 6th we ask that inside worshipers wear a mask to enter and exit the building; once seated in a pew, the mask may be removed. This policy is similar to one we exercised in the Fall of 2020.
- Assuming no tightening of CDC restrictions in that time, we will then remove the ribbons separating pews for three Sundays from June 13th through June 20th. In this timeframe, worshippers will still be asked to mask to enter and leave the sanctuary.
- By June 27th, guidelines may be loosened even more; however, we will wait until closer to that date before saying anything concrete.
As you are aware by now, these guidelines and policies are subject to rapid change based on CDC recommendations, State-wide recommendations, prayerful discernment, changes in infection rates, and more. I deeply appreciate your grace, flexibility, and understanding while we navigate this season of the pandemic.
Once more, let me encourage you that health and safety are two of our highest priorities. For those who are uncomfortable worshiping in person, we have an online option available. Additionally, we have an outdoor option in the pavilion at 10:30AM. Sanitizer bottles and spare masks are still available for use when entering the building and for each in-person service.
Please continue to show grace, understanding, and care for one another. Again, the Paxtonville United Methodist Church currently adopts the CDC’s masking and distancing guidelines for vaccinated and unvaccinated people. As always, I covet your prayers and appreciate your understanding. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me.
Rev. Ryan T. Krauss, ACC