It is with great joy and excitement I announce we will be worshiping in person as a church this Sunday at 11 AM. At this time, UPC in Lyndhurst has no plans of reopening the building in the near future. However, God has provided a place for us to meet. As previously mentioned, Iglesia Bautista Betania (914 21st St, Union City, NJ) has generously offered their facility for us to use. While we hope to return to our location in Lyndhurst soon, we are grateful for the blessing of having a space to gather and worship.
As much as we would like for our Sunday worship service to return to normal, gathering for worship on Sunday will be a bit different. In order to create the safest environment for worship, we will be following Executive Order 152 from Governor Murphy which provides the guidelines for church gatherings. Below is a summary of the guidelines we will be following:
- 50 person max capacity for Indoor Gatherings
- Face Masks Required at all times (except ages 2 and under).
- Maintain 6 feet distance at all times (except for households/family)
- No sharing of physical equipment (E.g., musical instruments, chairs, etc.)
In order to comply with the above-mentioned policy we have developed some guidelines for us to follow on Sunday. PLEASE carefully read every line item below — each is important.
1) CHRISTLIKE COOPERATION: Since this is an official church gathering we kindly ask you to follow the guidelines and instructions we are giving today and any further instructions on Sunday. Our witness before outsiders (1 Peter 2:12), our biblical belief in God-ordained governing authorities (Romans 13:1–7), and respect for Betania’s own safety and reputation must motivate us to glorify God through our actions on Sunday (1 Cor. 10:31). I know we enjoy hugging each other and talking in close proximity. It will feel unnatural to not do that, but the Lord will help us.
2) REGISTRATION: We ask you to register online to let us know if you are planning on attending the service. Everyone in the household must be accounted for - even children. Registering will help the deacons set-up seating arrangements for that day in order to maintain the 6 Feet of distance and also help us keep the service under 50 people. Households will sit together.
3) PARKING: Please arrive early to find a parking spot as the church does not have a parking lot. Street parking can be difficult in urban environments (but not impossible) so please give yourself ample time to find a parking space.
4) MAIN ENTRANCE: Please enter through the back entrance of the building 914 21st street NOT the main entrance on the 22nd st.
5) MASK REQUIREMENT: Please bring and wear a face covering at all times inside the building. Children 2 and under or those with health issues that prohibit you from wearing a mask do not have to wear a mask. If you have any health issues that prohibit you from wearing one we will do our best to accommodate you so both you and others attending will be comfortable.
6) ARRIVAL: When you arrive, please wait to be seated. A member of the welcome team will greet you and take you to your seating area. Once seated please do your best to stay in your seating area in order to maintain the 6 Feet of distance.
7) HAND SANITIZER AND RESTROOMS: Hand sanitizing stations will be set up in several locations. If you need to use the restroom during the service please feel free to do so, but please wash your hands before returning to your seat. Please do your best to not touch door handles.
8) CHILDREN: We kindly ask parents to do your best to keep your small children with you at all times in order to maintain the 6 Feet distance. There will be no Hope Kids at this time. As the weeks progress, we will prayerfully make a decision when to restart Hope Kids. We encourage you to bring toys/coloring books for your smaller children if you believe it will help.
9) FOOD/DRINKS AND TRASH: Betania DOES NOT allow anyone to eat or drink in the main sanctuary (water is ok and feeding your baby of course is acceptable). So we kindly ask you not to bring food or drinks into the building. Please also maintain your area free of trash. When the service is over, please take your belonging and any trash with you. There will be trash bins placed in the lobby for you to throw out any items as you exit the building.
10) OFFERING: An offering basket will be placed near the lobby entrance for you to place your offering. Envelopes will be provided as you enter the building. Please feel free to give online using this link if you rather continue to give in that way: https://tithe.ly/give_new/www/#/tithely/give-one-time/1323059. Thank you for your generosity!
11) END OF SERVICE: Once the service is over we are going to ask everyone to leave the building in an orderly fashion maintaining the 6 Feet of distance. A pre-assigned team will stay behind to clean up so there will be no need to volunteer or stay behind if you have not been previously asked. We know some of you have been gathering already informally, but due to the restrictions, we cannot be socializing in the building as we are accustomed to. Once outside the building please feel free to socialize while also giving a good witness.
12) OUR ULTIMATE GOAL—WORSHIP GOD: Finally, this is all new territory for us. So prayerfully prepare to practice patience and cooperation. Ultimately our goal on Sunday is not to have the most comfortable worship experience but to gather and glorify God.
- We are planning on recording and/or live-streaming the service for those not able to attend.
- The service will be slightly shorter than usual since we have to wear masks the whole time and there is no Hope Kids.
- Gloves are NOT required and no one will be expected to wear them. Please note the welcome team will be wearing gloves since they will be handling materials and opening doors.
Looking forward to seeing you there!