Update from COVID-19 Response Team [2020-06-14]

Dear brothers and sisters:

We hope and pray that you are staying well, healthy and safe during this pandemic.  We are thankful that as far as we know, due to your diligence in following infection control guidelines, none of our church attendees have been infected with Covid-19.

We thank each of you for adapting to evangelizing, outreaching, worshipping, studying the Bible, fellowshipping, caring and praying virtually.

Since our last update on April, 3, the pandemic has peaked and the government has issued new guidance as the city slowly opens up.   We as a team has been following all the developments related to Covid-19 closely and have the following update: 

Our General Guiding Principles:

  1. We will balance government recommendations with an extra margin of safety and caution and the principles and practices of our Christian Faith and our church.
  2. We will consider all health and occupational safety concerns.
  3. We will work within the law and government guidelines since these so far have not had areas of conflict with our beliefs.
  4. We recognize that our congregations are interconnected as a community of families which has members attending different congregations.
  5. The pastoral team will have input before we finalize any guidelines.
  6. We will take a proactive approach.  We will anticipate future developments rather than only react to present and past developments.

Based on the above General Guiding Principles, subject to available human, organizational and equipment and technological resources, we will open the church in stages:

Stage:

  1. Live steaming at church    NOW
  2. Prayer meeting (virtual and in person)       NOW
  3. Cell groups- meeting at church or at home (virtual and in person)
  4. Adult Worship and Sunday School (virtual and in person), use of the gyms, sharing food & drinks
  5. Children activities. (difficult to social distance, keep face covering on, maintain meticulous hand hygiene)
  6. New normal church function (virtual and/or in person subject to ministry needs)

Requirements for coming to the church:

Whenever anyone comes to the church, we require that:

  1. They are not ill (no fever, no cough, no shortness of breath, no vomiting, no diarrhea etc) and not have conditions that decrease their immune response. They should self-check their temperature before leaving their home.
  2. They have not travelled outside of Canada or been in contact with anyone with confirmed or suspected Covid-19 in the last 14 days.
  3. They maintain social distancing of at least 2 meters.
  4. They follow frequent meticulous hand washing and hand sanitization.
  5. They wear a face covering.  Usually this would be a mask but using a face shield is acceptable if they have trouble singing or talking through a mask.
  6. They disinfect all equipment after use. eg. Microphones, musical instruments, music stands etc.  Whenever possible each person should be given usage of his own microphone.
  7. Whenever possible, items should not be shared to minimize spread of pathogens through touch.  Eg. Food, drinks, sheet music, books etc.
  8. The maximum number in a group in a room is 10 peopleOne of the group members must take a photo (with the exact time and location information in the digital file attribute) of the entire group as a record in case that there is a need for future contact tracing.  This photo must be emailed to info@gcgcny.org.  Privacy will be respected and this photo will only be used for contact tracing if needed.  The person sending the email should have the names and contact information of each person in the photo.
  9. Each person must supply and wear their own face covering.  
  10. The church will supply one face shield to anyone involved in ministry at the church who requires one to sing or speak.  Each person is responsible for disinfecting it after each use, storing it at home and re-using it.  Acceptance of this face shield signifies that person’s agreement to release the church of any liability from its use.
  11. They shall use only the designated entrances and exits.
  12. Church attendees shall not enter into the Grace Nursery School area since they have re-opened and have to follow strict infection control protocol from the government.

If you have any comments, suggestions, feedback or questions, please contact us through info@gcgcny.org.

Grace and peace,
Covid-19 Response Team
June 14, 2020

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