UMCG Covid Safety Guidelines–updated Feb 28, 2022

UMCG considers the good health and well-being of not only our members, but also our community, an act of Christian stewardship. We continue to seek to avoid harm and do good as we attend to the practices that help us grow in the love of God as the COVID 19 Pandemic continues toward an endemic status. With the guideline changes coming from the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the UMCG Health Advisory Team is publishing this update of our UMCG Covid Safety Guidelines.

For Sunday morning worship and Sunday school classes for all ages: masks will continue to be required for all persons over 2 through Easter. This allows worship and Sunday education to remain a lower risk and more inclusive gathering as community spread of COVID still presents a threat to immunocompromised and unvaccinated persons. We believe this lessens the chance of a potential outbreak that could hinder our Lenten and Easter worship. Wearing masks in worship services also allows us to continue singing and gathering in the ways we have grown accustomed to without adaptations. The Health Advisory Team will continue to monitor COVID cases in our area and will shorten or lengthen our masking requirement based on scientific data provided by public health agencies listed above.

Masks are strongly encouraged, but not required for all other meetings, gatherings or groups. We recommend each group consult with each other on how to do good and avoid harm as a group in consideration of each other’s needs and desires.

Effective March 1, 2022 coffee, refreshments, food service and kitchen use may continue following local COVID guidelines for serving food and beverages.

HVAC circulation needs to be in use when using rooms at the church. Use of Fellowship Hall still needs the opening of atrium and outdoor windows for safe ventilation and the lower level of Fellowship Hall is still restricted for meetings or gatherings.

If community transmission spikes in our area, we may return to mask requirements for all activities or suspend coffee, refreshments, and food service with short notice until the spike recedes.

In accordance with the Wesleyan principle of do no harm, we strongly encourage our congregation to continue practices that promote good health among our beloved community. These practices include vaccinations, wearing of masks, frequent washing of hands, good air circulation, and social distancing.

Any questions should be referred to the UMCG Health Advisory Team: Jim Alderfer, Sharon Anderson, Cheryl Johnson, Scott Stevenson, and Pastor Rob Hamilton.