Updated March 24, 2021: In-person worship closure continues until further notice
The building is available to the Bridgewater Food Pantry, 12-step support groups, and small group gatherings under strict guidelines and protocols, by reservation only.
An update from our Building Reopening Task Force:
We want to give an update about what the Building Reopening Task Force has been working on regarding reopening for in-person worship in the building.
Jeremiah 29:7 tells us: “But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.”
We are prayerfully considering guidance from the Southern New England Conference, CDC, State/local officials, and then, finally, looking at what our unique position is as a Church. Unlike many other churches in the area, our worship services are live-streamed on multiple platforms every Sunday. The Communion Sunday in March, for example, we had 103 devices streaming worship live. If each device is just 2 people watching together, that’s over 200 people watching worship together! We are blessed to have Rev. Beth, Julia, and Paul so willing and able to keep this ministry going.
But what would it look like if we opened the building for in-person worship?
• Per current state guidelines, there can’t be a coffee hour.
• We likely wouldn’t be allowed to sing.
• Communion would have to be taken to-go.
• We’d be extremely limited in the people who could attend.
• Congregants would have to be diligent about physical distancing.
These limitations are before we even consider problems unique to our building, like how would we cool the sanctuary in the Summer so it’s not 100 degrees inside? Fans blowing hot air around the Sanctuary certainly doesn’t feel safe. Even people fanning themselves compromises the benefits of distancing from each other.
Taking into account all of these factors, we have advised Cabinet against having in-person worship until at least the Fall.
Having said that, there are many factors giving us optimism about being on the road to re-opening the building for worship:
• Vaccines are rapidly being deployed, and will be available to anyone who wants one in the state of Massachusetts beginning later this month.
• The number of new cases in Massachusetts as well as in Plymouth County has stayed relatively flat for the last six weeks or so (although levels are still higher than they were last summer).
Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could gather safely for worship come the Fall? There is nothing we’d like more, and we know you feel the same way.
We appreciate your continued prayers as we journey through this difficult process, yearning for “normalcy” and face-to-face community, while being responsible in keeping each other and the community at large as safe as possible.
In Christ and with the grace of the Holy Spirit,
Ed Buckland, Mike Bundock, Krissy Cannizzo,
Lynn Pietras, Deb Sorgman, Eric Stotts