Updated COVID Protocols & Sunday Worship (May 23)

Dear friends and members of Franklin United Methodist Church,

The past few weeks have seen a precipitous decline in the total number of positive COVID cases in the Town of Franklin.  This week the Centers for Disease Control and Governor Baker’s Office have announced new guidance on the usage of masks.  With all these positive trends and announcements, I wanted to update you on how the Franklin United Methodist Church will proceed over the coming weeks.

On Sunday, May 16, the Church Council met and reaffirmed the metrics for safer gatherings.  These metrics determine whether we will meet in-person outside, in-person inside, or virtual ONLY.  While our current metrics allow us to meet indoors, and as long as the weather is nice, we will continue to preference outdoor meetings and worship.  Masks and social distancing are still required at all small group and worship gatherings (including those meeting outside) regardless of whether or not you are fully vaccinated. These requirements acknowledge that there are still many among us who are not fully vaccinated.  We will not be asking if you are vaccinated nor will we setup segregated seating for those who are vaccinated and those who are not.  For these reasons, we will still require (for the time being) you to wear a mask and distance when attending all in-person gatherings.

At the May 16 meeting, the Council approved the immediate re-introduction of congregational singing when meeting outside, socially distanced, and masked. 

In the event of inclement weather, we will plan to move gatherings inside (assuming our metrics for safer gatherings are met).  In the event that we move inside, singing will not be allowed.  We will re-evaluate our protocols at the next Church Council meeting on Sunday, June 13.  This meeting coincides with the lifting of the Governor’s Emergency Order on June 15.

I strongly encourage you to get vaccinated as quickly as you can.  The best way to protect each other, and especially our children, is for every youth and adult who is eligible for the vaccine to get the vaccine. If you have not made your appointment, please do so ASAP.

This Sunday (May 23), our worship together will be outside.  It is forecasted to be a beautiful morning.  Worship begins, as always, at 10am.  Dress casual and comfortable for the weather.  Feel free to bring a chair or blanket to sit on, or use one of the church folding chairs.  Invite your friends and family.  We will continue to offer the ability to join worship virtually for those who prefer to meet online, details for joining worship online can be found at franklinumc.org/worship.

If you have any questions about our reopening procedures, or you just want to chat, don’t hesitate to call or email me directly.

Peace.
Pastor Jacob

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