A Word from David on Reopening
We will begin to open up StoneBridge for corporate gatherings again at our new building. We are excited to be able to do this and are looking forward to seeing those who are able to attend. To be clear, these gatherings will not look/feel like our gatherings pre-COVID. We aren’t there yet. However, we do believe we can begin to safely come together again in smaller settings, with fewer people per gathering, following Governor Kemp’s most recent Order regarding assemblies and social distancing as well as some other basic health protocols.
In order for us to re-open successfully we need everybody’s cooperation. I realize each individual has a different ‘tolerance level’ around COVID and the processes put in place to slow its spread. Some are very sensitive and follow all of the recommendations to the letter, others are less so and are more lax in their behavior. We are asking each of you to honor these guidelines regardless of how you feel about them. This is both a concrete expression of love of neighbor and is necessary if we are to open up again.
At the same time let me be explicit – you may get sick if you attend a corporate event. We hope not and we pray not. We will do our best to sanitize after each gathering and to encourage everyone to wash their hands and practice social distancing. However, none of those behaviors are guarantees against catching coronavirus (or any other virus.) If you attend a corporate event at StoneBridge you are taking a risk. Therefore, please do not attend any corporate events at StoneBridge if you are not comfortable doing so. This may go without saying, but I want to be clear: staying home does not mean you are fearful, you don’t trust God, you don’t love the Church, etc. It is not a sign of weak faith to avoid corporate gatherings. We will continue to broadcast all corporate services online and will welcome you back in-person at whatever time you are comfortable returning.
Some general guidelines for all StoneBridge events:
- Please do not attend any corporate events at StoneBridge if you are experiencing any COVID-like symptoms including a fever of over 100.4 degrees, shortness of breath or trouble breathing, cough, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, or new loss of taste or smell (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html), if you’ve tested positive for COVID and have not yet been cleared to stop quarantine by a health care professional, or if you’ve been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID in the last 14 days.
- Please take your temperature prior to attending a StoneBridge corporate event and do not attend if you have a fever.
- Please be aware that Governor Kemp’s current shelter-in-place Order for those 65 and older and medically fragile does not expire until June 12. While we are not prohibiting anyone from attending corporate events at StoneBridge, if you fall into either of these categories we do want to encourage you to carefully consider whether it is the right decision for you. If you are 65 and older and want to attend a Farewell Service, we are making the Wednesday morning Service available exclusively for those in that age bracket in order to potentially limit exposure to people who may no longer be sheltering in place. (If needed we can add another service for this demographic as well.)
- Please register for all StoneBridge corporate events. We need to know how many people are attending in order to ensure we can maintain proper social distancing. If you don’t sign up we will not let you enter the building (it will be Matt’s job to turn you away and you don’t want to make him do that.)
- Please practice social distancing during all StoneBridge events – this means no hugs, no handshakes, basically – everybody needs to act like me. I know this will be difficult for many of you. You want to be together again and a large element of that is being close. I am sorry. Right now, we believe it is best to maintain social distance to reduce the potential spread of the virus. Kim will have yard sticks – don’t make her use them.
- Please follow the ‘traffic patterns’ that are laid out in the building and be responsive to those directing the flow of people through the building. This will help both with social distancing and sanitizing.
- Masks are recommended, especially when entering/exiting the building, but are not required.
I know the above is not ideal, but it is the best we can do under the circumstances. As a staff we are deeply appreciative of your grace as we try to navigate these waters. Your input, your responsiveness, your encouragement, and your flexibility make it easier for us to move forward and we are grateful for that.
As always, complain to Kim and send any encouragement to me.
Have a great day.
David (for the staff)