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  • UPDATED Gathering Guidelines

    Scott McKee General 1 month ago

    UPDATE EFFECTIVE JUNE 22, 2021

    Per the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ (MDHHS) order to rescind all mandates for face masks and gathering guidelines, we are also lifting additional COVID-19 related policies at Ward Church. In addition to lifting our mask-required-for-all policy (which went into effect on May 16) as it applied to adults, we will also lift any mask requirements for children ages 18 and younger. We also will return to our pre-pandemic room capacities and remove any physical-distancing requirements that had been in place since March 2020. We will continue to maintain a high level of cleaning and sanitation and have hand sanitizer readily available across the building. As always, if you have any cold or flu symptoms or have been exposed to COVID-19, please stay home and join us online. In short, masks are welcomed, but not required for any age regardless of vaccination status.

    If you prefer not only to wear a mask yourself, but to be around others who are wearing masks, a designated space where masks are preferred will remain on the right side of the Sanctuary nearest Entry 6, through the summer. Just let an usher know that you would like to sit in a “mask-only” section. All other seating areas will include both masked and unmasked guests.

    Thank you again for your continued patience and endurance through this difficult season, and please continue to show love, grace and compassion to others as we progress toward returning to normal life.


    Dear Ward Church Friends,

    It has been life-giving to gather and worship in person as a church family with health and safety as a top priority.

    You may be aware that on Thursday the CDC released new guidelines stating that fully vaccinated people can gather in most indoor and outdoor spaces without masks. The State of Michigan responded by adjusting the Michigan mask mandate to match the new CDC guidelines. This is a big milestone!

    Starting this Sunday, May 16, we are removing our mask-required-for-all policy and simply asking guests to follow the new CDC and State of Michigan guidelines to ensure a safe environment for all. Masks continue to be welcomed, but not required, for adults who meet the new guidelines. Masks continue to be required for kids and students, kindergarten and up. Policies for certain volunteer teams will vary based on role. Be on the lookout for separate communication from your team leaders.

    We recognize this news is exciting for some and may cause anxiety for others, and we are committed to providing a safe environment for everyone attending in person. If you prefer not only to wear a mask yourself, but to be around others who are wearing masks, a designated space where masks are still required has been established on the right side of the Sanctuary nearest Entry 6. Just let an usher know that you would like to sit in a “mask only” section. All other seating areas will include both masked and unmasked guests.

    While the mask policy has shifted, our commitment to your health and safety remains unchanged. We will maintain a high level of cleaning and sanitation, have hand sanitizer readily available, and encourage physical distancing in the Sanctuary and hallways. If you have any cold/flu symptoms or have been exposed to COVID-19, please join us online.

    Regardless of your perspectives on vaccines and masks, let’s keep compassion, kindness, and civility at the forefront of our actions and attitude. Come ready to worship the God who is with us in all seasons!

    See you soon!

    Scott

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