June 13th, 2020 COVID-19 IMPACT UPDATE
Dear Faithful Members and Supporters,
On behalf of the entire Church Council, we want to express our appreciation for your support of the church over these past few months. Your support has been amazingly uplifting to the Council as we guide our church forward in this unusual time. This letter is to inform you of our plans to resume physical church services beginning July 5, 2020 with a phased-in approach. It is also intended to provide you with a summary of our thought process and our initial phased action plan.
We believe that Waikoloa Community Church is essential to our faithful members and supporters. We recognize that many of our faithful members and supporters are deemed high risk individuals because of their age and/or underlying medical conditions. We also recognize that our faithful members and supporters need to exercise their own prudent judgment as to when they will return to active, physical participation in church activities. It is within this framework that we have developed these guidelines to resume physical services of the church following the guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control, the State of Hawaii, the County of Hawaii, and other independent sources.
Our guidelines are meant to be flexible in order to meet any unexpected changes in the guidance provided by others. However, we fully intend to resume physical services in a prudent, sensible manner consistent with currently known guidance. Part of our flexibility will include the continuing live streaming of our services. In this way, those who are exercising their own prudent judgment, have the option of attending physically, or staying home to attend virtually.
With this being said,
the Church Council has approved
resuming physical church worship experiences,
beginning Sunday, July 5, 2020.
The Church Sanctuary will be used for physical & live streaming of worship experiences with the following guidelines:
• Attendees are required to practice CDC Recommended Preventative Actions. Signs will be on-site to remind us all.
• Attendees who do not follow these guidelines will be required to leave.
• Attendees are encouraged to bring their own masks & hand-sanitizing supplies, though we will have some available.
• Attendance will be limited to a maximum of 50 participants per service, including staff and volunteers.
• A Reservation System will be used to assist in complying with these Guidelines while allowing the maximum number of attendees to physically participate in the church service. More information in the FAQ section below.
• All participants, including greeters and volunteers, are required to wear face masks while on church property.
• Social distancing with a minimum of six (6) feet of separation between households and groups is required.
• Proper ventilation requires the use of fans, and all doors are to remain fully open throughout the service.
• “No Touch” greetings amongst attendees will be used to comply with the social distancing guidance above.
• Announcements, song lyrics and Scriptures will be presented via video. No handouts will be shared.
• Financial support offerings can still be made on-line, by mail, or placed in the YAY GOD BOXES while on premises.
• Please provide your own envelope with your contact information for cash offerings if you need IRS tax credit.
• Persons over age 60 should use their own discretion in attending services as they are more vulnerable to illness.
• Persons who are ill are to stay at home to protect the safety of others.
• Persons who become ill during the service will be required to seek immediate medical assistance and areas they occupied will be immediately cleaned. These persons will be required to provide the Church with any medical information regarding this incident. If you become ill after attending worship please let the church office know promptly.
• All hymnals, Bibles, and other materials have been removed from the sanctuary.
• The pews have been replaced with chairs to better assist with social distancing requirements and easy sanitizing.
• Chairs and “high-touch” surfaces will be thoroughly sanitized before and after each worship experience.
• The nursery/cry room will remain closed until further notice and is not available for use.
• Sunday School, Children’s Ministry, and our Bus/Van Ministry will remain closed and unavailable until further notice.
• The Administrative Office will CONTINUE to be STAFFED by the Pastor and Church Administrator 9am-1pm Monday through Thursday. The Church Treasurer has access at all times as well. All others may visit BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. A limit of four people can be in the office at one time and all must wear masks while meeting in this small space.
Please note that the Church Council is still working on additional guidelines to resume other physical activities at the church. However, until such time as the Church Council has approved those additional guidelines, the Fellowship Hall will not be available for any activities including, but not limited to: Vacation Bible School, Sunday School, Bible Study classes, nursery/cry room and other similar church activities, and for any community activities, organizations, groups, or meetings.
Mahalo Nui Loa On Behalf of The Waikoloa Community Church Council!
Knut Hovde, Council President and Greg Scott, Lead Pastor
1) WHAT IF I FEEL ILL IN ANY WAY PRIOR TO ATTENDING?
Please stay home. Better safe than sorry to avoid making others ill. Please join our live online worship instead.
2) WHAT IF I BEGIN TO FEEL ILL DURING WORSHIP OR AFTER ATTENDING WORSHIP?
Ill during service? Please exit the worship service quickly and tell the staff so we can provide medical assistance and ensure the safety of others.
Ill after attending? Please notify the office promptly so safety precautions can be taken.
3) ARE FACE MASKS REQUIRED TO ATTEND?
Yes. Face Masks are required. If you cannot wear a face mask, please stay home and participate in our live online worship instead. If you need a mask we will provide one, but if you have one, please use it to help us conserve supplies.
4) WHEN ARE WORSHIP EXPERIENCES EACH WEEK?
To keep groups as small as possible we will resume our normal weekly schedule of:
9:00 am Modern Worship on Sundays.
10:30 am Traditional Worship on Sundays.
7:00 pm Modern Worship on Wednesdays.
5) HOW DO I RESERVE SEATS?
To ensure adequate distancing between households and groups we need everyone to RESERVE SEATS for your household or group no later than 10 AM on Thursday each week. Contact Annette at email@example.com or 808-883-8944 with the name and number of people in your “household” or “group.” Annette will then create a “seating chart” and you will be notified of which row and which side of the sanctuary your household/group will be seated. You’ll find your household/group name on the floor in front of your chairs when you arrive.
6) WHAT IS A “GROUP”? WHAT IS A “HOUSEHOLD?”
Household refers to a family who all live in the same home.
Group refers to a group of nine or less people who do not live in the same home, but are close friends or family, and feel comfortable gathering together closer than six feet apart.
Currently, the state and county allow groups of 10 or less to gather closer than six feet – even if you are not living in the same household. However, masks are still required.
At WCC, a GROUP or a HOUSEHOLD can reserve a block of up to NINE (9) seats all together in one row.
7) WILL CHILDREN’S MINISTRY BE AVAILABLE?
No. We are sorry, but at this time we cannot safely offer children’s ministry or the cry room at this time. Your children are, of course, welcome to attend with you in the adult worship, but if they are very young, please bring something to hold their attention and prevent distractions to others in attendance. Please utilize the Kid Korner page of our website for some great family activities and lessons.
8) WILL THERE BE HAND SANITIZER /MASKS ON SITE?
We currently have BOTH available but please bring your own, if possible, to help us conserve supplies.
9) WHAT IS “SHORTENED NO-TOUCH” WORSHIP?
We are shortening worship experiences to 45 minutes.Please refrain from hugs, handshakes, high fives, elbow bumps, fist bumps, etc. (Shakas, waves or “air-hugs” only.) Even if you are comfortable touching, others may not be. Let’s be sensitive to everyone’s comfort levels. No hymnals or Bibles or offering envelopes will be provided. All announcements, lyrics, Scriptures and Sermon Points will be displayed on the TV screens.
10) WILL THERE BE “FELLOWSHIP/MEET & GREET TIME”?
Not in this initial phase. We are encouraging all to practice quick in-and-out movements. Since the services are shortened, no “meet and greet” will take place, and you will have reserved seating waiting for you, there is no need to come early or stay late to fellowship at this time.
11) WILL REFRESHMENTS BE SERVED?
Not at this time. No refreshments will be served. However, you are encouraged to bring your own non-alcoholic beverage in a spill-proof lid cup. The drinking fountain will be closed so no drinking water is available on site.
12) WILL THE RESTROOMS BE AVAILABLE?
Since we are keeping worship experiences short, we encourage everyone to use the restroom at home and avoid (if possible) using the restrooms at the church. The church restrooms will be open for those urgent and emergency needs with the following provisions.
A) Used By One Person (Or One Household) At A Time.
B) Soap AND hand sanitizer will be provided.
C) After each restroom use, volunteers will close the restroom and sanitize everything before opening it to the next person.
13) HOW CAN I GIVE MY OFFERING?
A) Give online at WaikoloaCC.org/GIVE/
B) Mail a check to:
Waikoloa Community Church
P.O. Box 383433
Waikoloa, HI 96738
C) Drop check/cash offerings in a lobby YAY GOD BOX.
NOTE: If you bring a cash offering for the YAY GOD BOX and desire IRS Tax Credit, please bring it in your own envelope with your name, address and phone number on it. No envelopes or writing utensils will be available at the church.
14) HOW WILL WE PRACTICE COMMUNION?
On Communion Sundays we will provide pre-packaged wafer and juice containers at each seat, so no one is touching each other’s elements.