We're glad you'll be joining us for an in-person worship service and want to let you know what you can expect. Here's how we'll be adjusting our COVID mitigation plan beginning May 9:
May 9 – Instead of making a specific request, we will leave it up to individuals to decide whether or not to wear a mask. We expect both options being chosen among people in the congregation and welcome either choice. We will still have three services with seating every other row so distance can be maintained and masks will still be available.
June 6 – We plan to open up all the seating in the worship center.
July 4 – We plan to return to having two services at 9:00 and 10:45 on Sunday mornings.
Will mitigations come back?
We hope not! Throughout the last year we’ve been “planning in pencil” and have needed to make many adjustments along the way. We simply don’t know what will happen as mitigations continue to be lifted throughout our community. It’s our prayer that we’ll continue to see a reduction in cases and severe outcomes, especially as vaccination numbers rise. We’ll continue to monitor metrics like hospitalizations and deaths, consider health recommendations and health orders, and seek counsel from physicians in our congregation as we move forward.
What about CDC and local recommendations?
Kansas and Sedgwick County have lifted their mandates regarding masks and social distancing while still making recommendations for mitigations and vaccines. The CDC also continues to adapt their recommendations related to different settings and a person’s vaccination status. Because adults have had the opportunity to be vaccinated and community COVID metrics in Wichita remain fairly low, we will leave it up to individuals to decide what measures they’ll continue to take while at church.
For those choosing to not be vaccinated…
Like most things, the freedom to make a personal choice is accompanied by personal responsibility. We recognize there are a variety of reasons someone may choose to not be vaccinated. At the same time we think the potential for an increase of transmission and severe outcomes is closely tied to the level of immunity in Wichita. Especially with the spread of variants and as people participate in activities that are more likely to lead to transmission of COVID. We would ask those who aren’t choosing vaccination to consider what preventative measures they will take to avoid unintentionally infecting those who are still at high risk or those who cannot be vaccinated.
We'll continue to provide an online option for those who aren't feeling well, have health concerns, or aren't comfortable attending in person. The 9:30 service will be livestreamed and the recording will be available afterward to view any time.