May 22, 2020
Dear CPC Church Family,
After two months of virtual worship services, I am excited to announce plans for a return to gathered worship at 3p on Pentecost Sunday, May 31, at Grace Bible Church in Georgetown. I would like to share what is behind these changes and some of the details that will help you to decide if you should attend the service or continue to worship with us online.
New Meeting Location
Because school facilities remain closed due to COVID-19, the deacons conducted a search of locations that would be conducive for worship. It quickly became apparent that the best option would be to use another church building because it would already be set up for worship and have the increased capacity needed for social distancing. After considering cost, location, and overall setup, it became clear to us that Grace Bible Church was our best option. We are grateful to Pastor Dave Roberts and the Grace Bible elders for welcoming us with open arms.
This pandemic has been an extraordinary time that has required all of us to make sacrifices and adjustments in the way that we live; unfortunately, that includes our Sunday schedule. An afternoon worship service time is a huge change, but I think it can work for a season. I am thankful for how you have embraced online worship and trust that you will embrace this change as well. Perhaps this will encourage all of us to remember that the Lord’s Day of rest and worship encompasses the entire day, not just the morning.
Just as federal, state, and local governments have taken a phased approach to re-opening public entities, we feel it is wise to take a similar approach. We plan to follow Governor Abbott’s guidelines for re-opening, and we are in contact with other churches locally and regionally to learn best practices that will ensure the safety of our church family. The worship service beginning May 31 will be very similar to what we have been doing for the last eight weeks with the added benefit of being able to worship together in the same location.
With that in mind, we will be taking a number of safety precautions as we begin to gather. You can read about these here, and we will update you as things change. The safety protocols for May 31 will be communicated to you via e-mail next week as well.
In addition to the precautions that we are taking, we encourage you to do the following:
1) Stay home and watch the service online:
• If you are sick,
• If you are over the age of 65 (per Governor Abbott’s guideline),
• If you have an underlying health condition that might put you or others at risk, or
• If you have young children with curious hands and / or who would struggle to wear a mask. (Parents, if this last one applies to you, we encourage you to stay home and / or have parents alternate attendance.)
2) Wash / Sanitize your hands — We are asking everyone in the congregation to wash their hands or use hand sanitizer when entering the worship area Sunday morning. Hand sanitizer will be available at the welcome table as you enter the sanctuary.
3) Wear a mask — This is encouraged for ages 4 & up to protect others. Masks will be available for you at the welcome table if you do not have one.
4) Sit together as a family—The chairs in the sanctuary will be separated and organized so that you can sit with your family and maintain social distance from others.
Filled with Gratitude
I am reminded through all of this that Jesus promised to build his church and that the gates of Hell will not prevail against it (Matthew 16:18). Throughout history, especially in the most turbulent times, the church has been triumphant because the One to whom all authority in heaven and on earth has been given is our redeemer and sustainer. Like the first disciples who followed Jesus at great personal cost because they knew their reward was sure, let us rejoice that we, too, are called to share in his sufferings and in his glory. For these reasons, I am filled with gratitude as I look to the future because I know that the One who called us is faithful to build his church in Georgetown.
For the King,
Whit (For the Session of CPC)