Dear sisters and brothers in Christ,
Grace and peace to you all! I am happy to share the good news that starting this Sunday 7 March, the doors of the ESUMC sanctuary will be open for in-person worship, with worship starting at 11:15. At the same time, all Sunday worship services shall continue to be streamed via Zoom.
After a careful review of government-issued guidelines related to indoor worship, it has been determined that we may hold worship services for up to 50 persons. This calculation was reached based on a number of data points, including the size of our sanctuary, the ability to socially distance, the number of windows and ease of ventilation, and the duration of our gathering.
Please take note of the following guidelines for in-person worship:
- All persons must write their name and contact details upon arrival. (This information shall be destroyed after 14 days.)
- A distance of 2 meters from persons from other households must be maintained.
- The congregation shall not sing.
- Children’s Time shall be offered, but children will not be invited to the front of the sanctuary.
- The offering plates shall not be passed; members shall be encouraged to leave their Loose Plate Offerings in a box in the rear of the sanctuary.
- There shall be no Sunday School or organized fellowship; informal conversation should be kept to a minumum.
- Persons removing their masks to lead worship must be tested within 48 hours of the start of worship; tests shall be made available before worship.
Also, I am aware that many of you are eager to return to the sanctuary to receive the sacrament of Holy Communion. Thus, Holy Communion will be celebrated during the in-person worship service on both 7 March and 14 March.
Lastly, please let us take responsibility for one another’s health and well being. If you have a fever, feel sick, or show any symptoms of illness, please do not come to the sanctuary for worship.
Every Sunday, our Covid Prevention representatives will be on hand to assist the congregation to follow the requirements associated with in-person worship. If you have any questions or concerns, please be in touch with the Worship Committee or me.
Of course, we make these hopeful plans with the understanding that the situation may change again either before or after Sunday 7 March, and thus we shall adapt our plans as needed.
Thank you for your prayerful support, and I look forward to welcoming you soon in person for worship!
Yours in Christ,
English-Speaking United Methodist Church of Vienna
Sechshauser Straße 56, Vienna 1150 Austria
Rev. John Calhoun, Pastor+43-664-419-3200