All Saints Update
May 1, 2020
We will begin to have some in-person services at All Saints starting this Sunday, May 3rd. We will have our usual 8:15 Holy Communion service in the chapel and the 10:30 service in the main sanctuary. Using separate buildings allows us to eliminate the re-use of pews on the same day. We will also hold our Wednesday 7 p.m. Night of Prayer/Bible study. There will be very few other gatherings in the month of May. We are trying to balance the desire of many to worship together as Georgia begins to re-open with the need to be cautious while returning toward a measure of normalcy. With that said, I want to emphasize several things:
- Many of our folks should not attend services yet even though they would like to. This is particularly true of our older members and any with pre-existing health conditions. Also, I would ask that if anyone is exhibiting symptoms, even if you think it’s just allergies or a cold, you should stay home.
- Archbishop Foley recommends that those who do attend services at this time wear a mask. I realize that not everyone would like to, but it may make a difference between being able to attend worship safely or continuing to remain at home. We will limit the altar party in the chancel (clergy and choir) to 10 people so that they may safely “social distance” as it is impractical to lead worship while wearing a mask.
- We will continue to administer only the communion bread at this time and use the individually wrapped wafers (for a little while). Additionally, we will receive standing so that we don’t have multiple people touching the same altar rail.
- As before services were suspended, there will be no passing of the plate or shaking hands at the peace.
- Families may sit together and come up for communion together, but we should endeavor to observe social distancing between folks that do not live in the same household.
- Children's chapel will be offered, but there will be no nursery in May as we do not believe we can safely offer that service. Likewise, there will be no Sunday School or coffee hour this month.
- We will continue to record our Sunday services every week for those who choose to stay home. We are working on livestreaming our service, but it may have to be taped and posted Sunday afternoon initially. We will also offer “drive-through” communion again on the feast of Pentecost (May 31) for those who are not yet comfortable attending the service in person.
- Among the many activities that will not occur this month is our usual visit from the Archbishop for confirmation Sunday. We will re-schedule a confirmation service later in the year. A one-day Saturday class will be offered in advance of the Archbishop’s visit to complete the training for those who attended the confirmation class for most of the year.
At present it is hard to predict when the full schedule of services and gatherings we’re all used to will resume. We will seek to be attentive to changing conditions and adjust as necessary. In the meanwhile, I hope through both traditional and innovative ways we may be able to build community and provide multiple opportunities for all of us to grow in our knowledge and love of the Lord and in relationship with each other.