Dear Church Family,
It has been 2 months since we all were together for a worship service and they certainly have been some of the more difficult months of my ministry. I have faced a lot of uncertainty and even some fear over what might happen to you, to me, and to our church. The only thing I have felt confident of lately is that our God is sovereign and at work and more than able to use this pandemic for our good and His glory. Outside of that about the only thing I am sure of, is that it’s hard to be sure of anything!
But with much prayer and careful consideration, I believe it is time to begin to move forward with reopening our campus for worship services. Please know that this is not a decision that is being made lightly. We have read, prayed, asked for advice, and sought out the consensus of you, the church body.
So, on Sunday May 24th, we will begin to hold on campus worship services again. While I believe that worship never stopped for Mount Olive, it has certainly looked different over these last months and going forward it will continue to be different, as we move into our next phase of a “new normal.”
This has not been an easy decision to come to and I know that there will be several items in the reopening phases that may not meet your preferences or desires. I just ask that you remain patient with us and show much needed grace here.
I also know that some of our church body believes that we should have already made this decision, some have the opinion that we should wait a few more weeks, and some may not be comfortable or able to come the remainder of this year and beyond. So I ask you to please show that same grace to each other.
If you are older or compromised in some way, or live with someone who is, I believe that it is wise for you to take every precaution, and that likely means not attending right now. Even if you are younger but you feel like this isn’t the right time, that may also mean not attending. I want you to hear me when I say, I understand both of those positions very clearly.
We are dealing with a whole lot of unknown here, and there is no way to guarantee that no one will get sick by taking these steps to reopen, and so ultimately this is a decision that is very individual for you and your family. So I encourage you to pray, think clearly through this, and make the decision that is best for you and your family at this time.
Because we know that many will choose to continue to worship online and because we have seen the ability to get the message of the gospel out in more ways, we are working toward upgrading our ability to record and livestream the services. So even if you are unable to come, that option will continue to be available and hopefully in improved quality.
Here is the plan moving forward for the foreseeable future:
Worship Services: We will hold two services, one at 9 am and a second one at 11am.
**We ask that you reserve your seat ahead of time by filling out the form below. **
This gives us one hour for service and 1 hour to clean between services. We will be capping the services at 50, and will be offering an overflow room in the youth building that will hold additional attendees if necessary. This will be to ensure the capability of 6ft social distancing requirements
Masks: We will have a limited supply of masks available but please feel free to bring and wear your own mask.
Nursery and Children’s Church: We will not be offering childcare of any sort during this first phase of reopening, but we will have workbooks for your children.
Wednesday Nights: This will continue to be offered online only during this phase.
Added Safety Precautions:
- We will ask that you refrain from handshakes and hugs so as to maintain safe social distancing. We also ask that you ask your children to do the same.
- Tithes and Offerings will be collected in drop boxes located in the back of the worship center.
- ONLY the lower level doors to the worship center will be open and will remain open until the service starts and will be opened after dismissal.
- We ask that you sit together as a family unit and leave 6 ft of space (about 3 chairs) between
- The building will be cleaned and sanitized each week and surface areas will be cleaned between services.
- There will be no cookies or coffee stations during this phase.
Here are a few more possible changes:
- Once the Governor’s shelter in place rule for those 65 and older is over, we will likely reserve the first service for attendees 60 and over, and add a third service if necessary.
- Because of the above service times may also change.
Honestly none of this is ideal but it is a step and I look forward to seeing some of you as we begin to make this move. For those of you I don’t get to see soon I continue to pray that we will have that opportunity in the not so distant future. I am sure at this point if you are like me you may have more questions than answers. We will be sending out additional emails next week leading up the service date to attempt to cover every possible base. If you have questions or concerns feel free to call me @ 770-584-4222
I love you all!