In this day of COVID, it's something we all have to ask when going somewhere: What do I need to do?
Here is how Gretna is choosing to handle things at this time:
Yes, and no. Though online Gatherings are a wonderful way for us to connect, there is something special about being physically together. There are often additional activities, experiences, and opportunties to build relationships when we meet.
NOTE: At this time, we are unable to stream our services live due to slow and inconsistent internet service at the building. Gretna is ready to move forward with live streaming should our options for internet service improve.
Our plan is to maintain one in-person gathering on Sundays at 9:45am. During this process we considered the
pros & cons of establishing multiple worship gatherings, but believe that at this time, a single gathering will best address the needs, desires, and capacities of our Gretna family.
We have chosen this path understanding that it is our path for right now, and that it may change over time. We understand that this is not a ‘perfect’ solution, but takes into consideration the perspectives and concerns of a wide variety of people in our family, and is the result of deep discussion and thoughtful prayer.
The short answer is: Yes, but it’s important to understand why.
Feelings about the impact of COVID and how society should respond are wide ranging, and strong - even within our church family. It doesn’t help that in the midst of all of the turmoil we are experiencing (and the emotions that go with it) the world is watching to see how we respond. The Leadership Team has chosen to move forward in a way that is driven by our love for God, and for each other. Jesus, afterall, says that this is how the world will know we are His people- by how we love one another (John 13:34-35).As Paul highlights in Romans 14 & 15, part of loving one another is recognizing that even when some of us feel as though we are free to do something, our greater call is to “pursue what promotes peace, and what builds up one another (Romans 14:19)”. In fact, Paul calls it an “obligation (Romans 15:1)”, and prays for God’s people to live in harmony where possible, because it brings God glory (Romans 15:5).
Driven by this call, we have chosen to make accommodations that will allow as many people as possible to feel safe attending our family’s Worship Gatherings. We believe that this approach brings glory to God.
No. We are depending upon everyone acting responsibly and staying at home if they aren’t feeling well. Since a number of people are asymptomatic, such measures would not provide an effective means of screening anyway. We do ask that if you have had any cold symptoms or fever within the last 24 hours, or are taking a fever reducer, to please remain at home and join us for worship online. Please keep your child at home when you observe any of the following symptoms:
No. Masks are not required, though they are encouraged. Face masks slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus from asymptomatic people to others. You are encouraged to bring your own face covering to gatherings, although Gretna will have a limited supply of disposable masks available for those who need them.
Wearing a mask is particularly important for activities like singing. Studies repeatedly show that the distance the virus travels in the air is greatly increased during such activities.
If you choose not to wear a mask, or can not due to medical concerns, please be respectful of social distancing guidelines and the needs of others.
No. Another best practice is to avoid transfer of items from person to person.
We strongly encourage attendees with Android or Iphones to download the Gretna App and use our new Digital Bulletin. A very limited number of Bulletins will be printed and distributed via mailbox to those who are not able to access them digitally. NOTE: To ensure your safety, a volunteer will be at the entrance to the library. He/she will be happy to hand you the contents of your mailbox upon request :-)
Offering boxes will be placed at the exits, and are to be used upon entering and exiting the building. Giving online is also encouraged to avoid bottlenecks.
The playground is not being cleaned/sanitized, so parents will decide at their own risk if they want to allow children to play on the playground. Children can also play in the grass next to the shelter house or on the ball diamond given parental permission and direct supervision. During our Worship Gatherings, we ask that children participate in the worship service and refrain from playing until the service concludes.
For now, we will be continuing to limit gatherings/events at Gretna to the following:
Yes. Facilities & Planning has put together a comprehensive plan to properly clean and sanitize areas used during gatherings.
We know this is a difficult time, and that this is not a perfect solution. It can feel frustrating and heartbreaking. Please feel free to contact the Office, Pastor Rob, or a member of the Leadership Team with questions. We are happy to meet up, discuss, and hear your concerns.