E-Newsletter for Sunday, December 13, 2020

Christmas Flowers & Music, Angel Tree, Vestry Nominations and more in the E-Newsletter for Sunday, December 13, 2020 – Available in full online here.

Haga clic aquí para ver el mensaje de esta semana en español de nuestro misionero latino, Luis Valencia. 

From the Rector
The Rev. Dr. Jared C. Cramer, SCP
Dear *|FNAME|*

As I told the Worship Ministers earlier this week, I have finished a review of current COVID-19 risk level data for Ottawa County.

According to COVID Act Now, the current surge of cases reached its peak on November 18. The graph is currently an inverted V on a downward trend, but the trend is slower than earlier, currently decreasing an average of 1.6 cases per day. If that rate of decrease continues, the earliest we would drop enough to reopen attendance would be Saturday, December 26.

Director of Music Nick Palmer and I have had a conversation and both agree it is unlikely the decrease will happen more rapidly, enabling attendance at Christmas Eve (something we had all anticipated would likely be the case). And, once the Christmas holidays are done, we will need to see if people’s Christmas celebrations were done safely or if the case level will increase once more.

For all these reasons, I have decided to assume an extension of Phase One worship (no attendance, much of the liturgy prerecorded in people's homes) through the end of January, 2021. (As a reminder, you can also see a video introduction to our pandemic plan online here and the plan itself is online here).

I want to stress that it is certainly possible that we will be able to resume attendance sometime in the middle of January, depending on case levels and the impact of vaccine roll-out. We will continue to follow the metrics in our parish plan for when we return to Phase Two.

However, I wrote the schedule for the first quarter of 2021 assuming a resumption in February primarily to make planning for worship ministers easier. If cases do decrease at their current rate and our risk level drops from Critical to High at the end of December, I will reopen limited attendance according to our COVID plan. 

Please continue to be careful and follow the guidelines of health officials. It is following those guidelines—wearing a mask, maintaining distance, refraining from gathering with anyone outside your household—that will bring the case level down, save lives, and enable us to begin finding some normalcy of life once more. 

Thanks, as always, for your kindness, flexibility, and support as our congregation tries to navigate this time safely and faithfully. 


NOTE: Remember, due to both our County and our Region are now classed at the highest risk level possible by COVID Act Now and the Mi Start Map we remain in Phase One of our plan for ministry in the Coronavirus Pandemic. The building is closed and worship is streaming online with no attendance. Please stay safe, wear a mask, and maintain social distance from those outside your own household. 

Read more in the E-Newsletter for Sunday, December 13, 2020 online here

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