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COVID-19 Updates

Yellow Phase and Green Phase

The Latest COVID-19 Updates – June 2, 2020

In the last several weeks, we have monitored guidelines and best practices for gathering in a safe way. After a significant amount of prayer and preparation, the Church Council and Board of Trustees have agreed to resume in person services at Salem beginning this Sunday, June 7th on a very limited basis. We will also continue to livestream both services through the Salem website and Facebook page.

We're committed to providing an environment that follows government recommendations for safety. To make that possible, our church building has been reconfigured to allow for appropriate physical distancing. As we enter the State determined yellow phase, worshipers will be limited to 60 per service, 12.5% of our total capacity. We will not be holding Sunday School for children, youth, or adults at this time and there will be no nursery. The children will continue to get weekly lessons in the mail until Sunday School returns.

We will continue to monitor the recommended best practices to determine any necessary changes in the future. We encourage you to make the best choice for yourself and/or your family as you consider whether to attend at the church or to continue to worship with us online.

Salem worship services will be as touchless as possible, and all high-volume areas will be thoroughly sanitized before every service. If you will be attending in person, we want you to be aware of the changes that have been implemented.

•   Please park at the main entrance and enter and exit through the front door only. It will be opened for you.

•   Wear your mask while walking in and out of the church, or within 6’ of others. Clean masks will be located by the front door if you have forgotten your mask.

•   Hand-sanitizing stations are placed throughout the building.

•   Pew guards have been installed to close off rows which will help with social distancing. Please sit at least 12 feet from others in the same pew (unless they are a member of your household).

•   There will be no bulletins.

•   All pew rack materials, papers, and pens have been removed.

•   No offering plates will be passed. Instead, offering boxes have been mounted at all the entrances to the sanctuary.

•   We encourage you to sing but “gently”.

•   The water fountains will be closed.

•   In lieu of our fellowship pads, attendance will be taken visually.

•   The restrooms are open if necessary. The doors from the hallway are propped open with a security screen in the hallway. Please do not close the doors.

•   Coffee Time will not be held until we can determine a safe way to offer this ministry. The kitchen is closed.

•   Nursery care will not be available until we can determine a safe way to offer this ministry.

•   When the service has ended, you will be directed to patiently make your way outside to the parking lot. Please do not congregate in the lobby before or after the service.

 

We are grateful for the ability to worship together as a church online, and we encourage you to continue to attend Salem Online if you or a family member doesn’t feel well, or if you're just not ready to attend church in person. You are part of the Salem family no matter where you choose to attend. Salem Online is also a great way to invite a friend to get to know us. At both 9:00am and 10:45am on Sunday mornings, you can go to Salem’s website or Facebook page to experience worship, the message, and the community of your church family.

Amendment to COVID-19 Updates – June 16, 2020

When Salem is ready to move into the Green Phase as determined by the state:

  • Members are welcome to return to public worship in the building with the following expectations:

o  Stay home if not feeling well

o  Sit only in the pews marked as open

o  Wear a mask while in the church and near others, unless sitting in the front section of the sanctuary. In the front section you may remove your mask while seated; the section will be marked.

o  Sing gently

o  Do not congregate in lobby

o  Use hand sanitizer and wash your hands.

 

  • Sunday morning worship will include:

o  Pew guards to separate worshipers

o  Bulletins will be provided and distributed by someone who wears gloves and a mask.

o  No offering plates (collection boxes are available at all entrances to the sanctuary)

o  Water fountains closed

o  Attendance taken visually

o  No coffee time

o  Communion kits

  • Sunday School classes will be permitted to resume in classrooms, provided they are able to maintain proper social distancing.
  • Nursery care will not be provided, until it is determined to be appropriate.
  • Small group meetings and studies allowed, provided they maintain proper social distancing.
  • Outside groups using the building will be limited to 50% capacity provided they are able to maintain proper social distancing. These groups must keep a list of persons who have entered the building under their ministry and provide this list to the church office after every use.
  • Outside groups must sign a waiver with the rental agreement stating that Salem will not be held accountable if someone attending group’s function gets sick.
  • Cleaning costs on rental agreements may increase due to higher cleaning standards.