Covid Task Force says in-person programming can continue with additional vigilance

After in-depth conversation on Dec. 31, 2021, the UUCC Covid Advisory Task Force advised that our church is taking all recommended precautions and that with additional vigilance in view of the increasing spread of the Omicron variant in the U.S., we can continue to offer both online and in-person programming for adults and children.

We are very grateful that our members are highly compliant with public health recommendations regarding vaccination and boosters, as well as masking in public and limiting exposures. If you are not boosted, we highly encourage you to do so as soon as possible.

We affirm that we must continue vigilance for the protection of those most vulnerable, including young children for whom vaccination is not yet available and all those who are medically vulnerable. Therefore, we will continue to follow these precautions with increased vigilance:

1. Please do not come to in-person church if you are at all sick or even “feeling under the weather” or have recently been exposed to a positive Covid case. In these cases, we look forward to seeing you online!

2. Masks must be worn at all times in the church building, except when speaking or performing on the chancel for a short period of time at large distance from the congregation, or when working alone in a room or office. Additionally, we are strongly recommending that all attendees wear maximally protective masks during the spread of Omicron, such as N-95, KN-95, and KF-94 masks. Studies are showing that simple cloth masks are no longer protective enough against the emerging variants. We will have children’s and adult’s sizes of KN-95 masks available at the church for those who need them.

3. Please maintain distance at all times. Seating pods will be set up with adequate distance in the sanctuary, and we ask you to maintain distance as much as possible when not in your seats. We recommend avoiding physical contact like hugging at this time.

4. We will continue to avoid congregational singing for the time being.

5. In the case of confirmed Covid spread during a church program, we will revert to online-only programming for a period of time as we re-assess our procedures. In the case of exposure to a positive case, we will directly contact all those identified as a close contact.

6. We continue our commitment to quality online programming and to inclusion regardless of format of participation as we seek to balance need for connection with protective measures. We encourage each congregant to always choose the participation format most in keeping with your own risk calculus. If we can better include you in our community’s life in person or online, please let us know!

7. We recognize that even those taking extreme precautions are becoming ill with the more contagious variants, even as vaccination continues to protect well against the worst severity of infection. We will reject stigma around illness of any kind and support one another in this challenging time. Please let us know if you become ill so that we can be a part of the community of care surrounding you!

We are holding one another in love as these challenging circumstances continue to unfold, and we are grateful for your renewed vigilance and your compassion and commitment to beloved community.

In Faith,
Rev. Molly and the Covid Advisory Task Force:
Barb Carter
Susan Even
Rosie Geiser
Cande Iveson
Larry Lile
Jan Swaney