Redeemer East Side Update
As you’re likely aware, there have now been multiple COVID-19 (coronavirus) cases confirmed in our area. The East Side staff team has been carefully monitoring the updates from the New York Department of Public Health and other resources to determine how best to address this developing situation in a prayerful and thoughtful way.
Rooted in the care that God has for us, our approach is driven not by fear and anxiety but by a desire to care well for our church family, our neighbors and the city. As we continue praying for those affected around the world and now in our own city, one tangible way our church can serve the city and each other is by taking measures to respond.
First, we want you to know we’ll begin to see some adjustments to our Sunday service experience, and we may make further changes in the coming weeks. Here are a few examples:
- We will have the offering baskets available as we exit the service rather than passing them down the row during the service. And remember, you can also give online.
- During our greeting time in the service, we will let everyone know to greet those around them but refrain from shaking hands. A friendly nod or wave will do. And we encourage the same as we greet each other in the hallways and during the coffee hour.
- Our operations team will be serving us coffee and refreshments during the coffee hour. They will be wearing gloves, which is our normal practice.
- Children’s hands will be squirted with hand sanitizer as they enter their classrooms. Here is a reminder of our Children’s Ministry wellness policy.
- Our Sunday Service Team volunteers (e.g., ushers, book table) will wash their hands frequently and use hand sanitizer.
We ask everyone to strictly follow recommended guidelines for illness. Adults and children should not attend if they have any symptoms or a fever within the previous 48 hours. And if anyone has traveled to an affected region or has had contact with potentially affected people, please stay away from crowds for two weeks.
Second, we want to encourage you to stay informed with the latest information. There are many helpful resources available. Here are a few we’ve found helpful:
- Center for Disease Control (CDC) extensive site
- New York City Health Department coronavirus site
- New York Times series of articles
- New York Times article, “What Parents Need to Know About Coronavirus”
- National Public Radio comic and 3-minute podcast for kids
Lastly, please pray for our church, city, and world — particularly for those with family members and friends in affected regions, those without ready access to health care or with weakened immune systems, and the poor who normally suffer the most in these kinds of situations. And let’s take the opportunity to love our neighbors if they express fear or confusion.
Thank you for taking the time to read this lengthy email and for praying boldly for healing and peace for our church family, neighbors, friends and coworkers during this time
Warmly in Christ,
P.S. Remember there will not be a 9:30 a.m. service this Sunday due to a previously scheduled event at Temple Israel. Please worship with us at 11:30 a.m. or 5 p.m.
P.P.S. Daylight Saving Time begins this weekend. Please remember to set your clocks forward by one hour.