Protecting God’s People During This Time of Pandemic
The leaders of Christ Church, including Reverend Emily and the Vestry in consultation with the Diocese of Michigan, have developed the following standards and protocol for ensuring the safety of our parishioners and those with whom we come into contact. It is expected that everyone will adhere to these processes without exception. We as a congregation are committed to protecting one another. Each one of us as an individual has a responsibility to follow these guidelines, and it will take all of us being responsible to keep us all safe.
If you have any questions or concerns about this protocol, please contact Emily, Sarah or a member of the Vestry.
What You Can Expect:
These policies will be adhered to uniformly and without exception. They may be updated as necessary, based on the changing situation and as new information arises. The clergy, staff, and vestry will continue to act in the best interests of the health and safety of the people of Christ Church and those with whom we interact.
First & Foremost
No one with symptoms or possible exposure should be present on the property, indoors or outdoors.
- Congestion, runny nose, or sneezing
- Sore throat
- Fever or chills
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Nausea or vomiting
Staff and committee leaders who are on-site must enforce this policy at all times.
Screening Before Entry
Anyone who needs access to any part of the Christ Church campus, including scheduling a gathering of any kind or meeting with vendors/contractors must schedule with the office at least 48 hours prior, and must complete our online Wellness Screening Questionnaire within 24 hours of scheduled arrival. If you arrive and have not completed the Wellness Screening, you will need to complete it upon arrival and you may be directed to go home and/or seek medical care.
In addition to providing contact information, prospective visitors will be expected to answer the following questions:
- In the past 14 days, have you experienced any of the following symptoms:
- A new fever (100.4 or higher) or a sense of having a fever?
- A new cough that you cannot attribute to another health condition?
- A new sore throat that you cannot attribute to another health condition?
- New muscle aches that you cannot attribute to another health condition or that may have been caused by a specific activity, such as physical exercise?
- New respiratory symptoms, such as sore throat, runny nose/nasal congestion or sneezing, that you cannot attribute to another health condition?
- New chills or repeated shaking with chills that you cannot attribute to another health condition?
- New loss of taste or smell that you cannot attribute to another health condition?
- Have you had close contact in the last 14 days with an individual diagnosed with COVID-19? *
- Have you traveled via airplane internationally or domestically in the last 14 days?
- Have you had a COVID-19 test and are currently awaiting results?
If the prospective visitor answers yes to any of these questions, and the individual does not have recent negative test results, they may not enter the property.
Use of Masks and Maintaining Physical Distance
Wear Masks at All times, Indoors and Outdoors
Please come prepared for your visit by bringing your mask with you. Masks are on hand to give to anyone who arrives without one.
Practice Physical Distancing
Everyone is expected to keep a safe distance. That means at least ten feet apart indoors, six feet outdoors.
Keep it Clean
At every opportunity, use hand sanitizer or wash your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds. Wipe down surfaces with appropriate sanitizer after use.
- Sufficient hand sanitizer is set out throughout the buildings, and more has been ordered.
- Sanitizing wipes are available as needed.
How the Staff is Working to Protect the People of Christ Church
We’ve changed the way we work, how we work, and where we work to ensure the safety of our parishioners and all those we come into contact with.
Following Workplace Requirements
All clergy & staff are expected to:
- Attend employee COVID-19 virtual training (to be scheduled)
- Follow this protocol at all times
- Wear masks at all times, except when required to remove as part of worship recordings
- Work from home as much as possible, and coordinate in-office needs with Emily and other staff
- Understand that no one with symptoms or possible exposure should be present at the workplace
- Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available
- Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth
- To the extent possible, avoid touching high-touch surfaces in public places – elevator buttons, door handles, handrails, etc.
- Minimize handling cash, credit cards, and mobile or electronic devices when possible
- Practice social distancing by at least ten feet at all times when indoors; six feet when outdoors
- Sarah is maintaining a Visitors Log. Everyone who needs to come inside any of our buildings must provide her with their contact information; purpose for entering; time in and time out; and exact locations in the building. Sarah maintains this information in a shared spreadsheet.
- We encourage anyone who has entered the building or attended a church-sponsored activity and then develops symptoms to inform the clergy in charge or warden as a courtesy, even in advance of positive test results.
- If a visitor tests positive, it is expected that they will communicate that result to the church office (Sarah or Emily) for the safety and protection of the Christ Church community.
Continuing Worship at Home
Online worship will remain our primary means of worship for the foreseeable future.
- We will continue our Worship at Home services via Liturgy of the Word video released on Sundays at 10:30am via Facebook, YouTube, and the christcd.org website
- These videos are produced in a safe manner, following the stated protocols.
Exploring New Opportunities
Emily, the Vestry, and the Property Use in Pandemic ad hoc committee are seeking ways in which we can safely hold small, in-person worship opportunities and other types of gatherings. Sites currently under consideration include:
- Woodbridge Avenue lawn
- Jefferson Avenue courtyard
- Sperry-Mackey Park
- Parking lots
Use of Indoor Space
Since any indoor space used for gathering must be well-ventilated, and since the sanctuary does not have ventilation, in Phase II it will be reserved only for:
- Small, essential pastoral services such as interments in the columbarium
- Excavation and repair of the water-damaged subfloor, foundation, and undercroft
- Basic maintenance and cleaning
- Recording portions of the Sunday worship videos in as little time as possible
As an expression of inclusion and protection of one another, recognizing that in the Eucharist we are made “one body” not excluded from that body because of or in fear for our health, communion will not be offered, at least at first. When conditions improve significantly and that fear is relieved, we may begin to consider it.
Addressing Positive Infection
In the situation that someone has tested positive for COVID-19 and has entered the building or attended a church-sponsored activity during the infection period, the following requirements and guidelines must be followed.
After receiving word of a positive infection, the clergy person in charge or warden will verify with the person that the county is doing contact tracing. Using our visitor log, we will conduct notifications of all people who may have come in contact with the person, while keeping their identity confidential, if appropriate. These notifications might include, but are not limited to:
- Fellow worshippers
- Outside groups or small groups that used the building within 72 hours of the person’s presence
- People who may have cleaned the building within 72 hours of the person’s presence
We urge all people who may have been affected to self-quarantine for 14 days.
Temporary Suspension of Gatherings
In the case of a positive infection, all in-person worship and other in-person gatherings will be suspended for 14 days.
If the person had entered the building, parish leadership will make provision for a deep cleaning of the space, including any affected rooms, access hallways, doorknobs, and bathrooms.
Leadership will plan for and adopt the following communications plan, including:
- Clergy in charge or warden will serve as a spokesperson for any press inquiries that may arise
- The Vestry will develop and share the church’s clear, concise, constructive, and transparent message
- Parish leadership will be in communication with the members of the congregation.
- Parish leadership will be in communication with the bishop and diocesan office