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Worship and Connect Virtually

March 16 Update: Due to new recommendations from the CDC to avoid all gatherings of more than 10 people, all building use at the United Church of Underhill is now suspended. We are monitoring the situation closely and will report back with updates.

TO: The United Church of Underhill and Community Users of our Church Facilities

FROM: Dan Manz, Chair, Church Council and Jen Mihok, Pastor

DATE: March 13, 2020

RE: Two-week suspension of in-person Sunday worship and church facility use

Grace and peace dear church and community members,

We have been monitoring the evolving COVID-19 outbreak and trying to understand what role our church can and should play in helping to contain it. There is now at least one known case in Chittenden County and it appears likely more will be identified in coming days. One strategy to limit the spread of this disease is to avoid group gatherings such as worship and in-person meetings. Accordingly, we decided this morning to suspend worship and all meetings at the United Church of Underhill for the next two weeks (planning to resume worship on March 29). We will continue to follow best practices in public health and update our thinking as soon as possible about resuming worship and other business as usual.

Here are specific steps we are taking:

  • We will notify our parishioners and the broad United Church of Underhill community about this decision to suspend worship and other facility use for two weeks. All Church ministry meetings and other uses of our facilities should be rescheduled or meet by virtual technologies where possible. The one exception to this approach is AA, who will be empowered to make their own decisions about meeting in-person.
  • Stay tuned for ways to join worship and church meetings virtually.While being together face-to-face isn’t the right choice for now, this is a public health matter not a theological problem! We are currently investigating the best way to worship virtually for these two Sundays and will report back soon. (Update 3-14-20: see instructions here on how to join worship from home. Options to join via computer or phone are available.)
  • Wherever possible, we will encourage our church staff to work from home.

Let us acknowledge we are entering some uncharted territory for our church. Your patience and understanding is appreciated. Please keep an eye on the Church website at http://unitedchurchofunderhill.com/ for updates and messages. We are all in need of prayer for each other during this time. Please continue to check in on friends and neighbors with a phone call or message. If you have any questions or needs, please do not hesitate to be in touch with either one of us in the days ahead.

Dan Manz, 802-899-3411, councilchair@ucu.church
Jen Mihok, 802-899-1722, pastor@ucu.church

Related:
>> How to join worship from home
>> Worship Recordings Archive
>> Pastoral Letter for times of distancing