Hello and Happy May. Wishing all mothers a marvelous Mother’s Day. The Board of Stewards meeting on May 6 was well represented. Lydia Ponce joined us from the Asbury Campus. It was great to see her.
The church’s finances continue to hold steady thanks in huge part to the support of the CARES Act loan. This covers salaries, benefits, and some of the other costs such as utilities. While tithing continues to fall below expected numbers, the staff has continued to control costs to only the bare necessities.
The focus of the discussion was on the status of the church activities. Roger Lind presented the report from Monday’s meeting of the Opening Protocol Task Force. The task force is using the guidelines provided by Bishop Schnase that recommended churches not open prior to May 31. The ever-changing directions from the civic leaders – local, state, and national – were also discussed. However, the foundational guide is the Wesleyan rule, “Do No Harm.”
Calls have been coming in for all types of events. People are asking about worship and Sunday school. Small groups wonder about meeting. Weddings are already scheduled and need to happen. Funerals currently being delayed are requested. Each of these are important and each have their own requirements. We want to make sure that all care for the safety of participants is taken when they do occur.
The task force is in the process of determining the protocols for each of these types of activities. As both the task force meeting and the board meeting revealed, there are many details that must be considered to ensure the safety of all. The board approved preliminary instructions for small groups, funerals, and weddings. The task force meets again on Monday to refine those and review standards for other areas. Again, our goal is to begin a soft reopening in June. We will keep you posted as the details are firmed.
Most important for all members of the congregation is a request for feedback regarding reopening. In the church’s weekly email update, there is a link to a survey. The questions on this survey will help us as we develop the plans for reopening the campus. Please help by taking a few minutes to complete it.
I have had the opportunity over the last week to participate in the calls that we are making to members. Some wonderful conversations. This same sentiment was reflected as the topic was discussed last night. Thank you to all who are calling. Our goal is to connect. Our church is strong because of our marvelous relationships. Whether through calls or emails or virtual connections, we are one.
Blessings to each of you. Be safe. Stay strong.
Kathryn “Kitty” Meyers