All Saints

COVID Update

March 12, 2020

Keeping the Body Healthy and Connected at ASEC

In this season of heightened awareness of COVID-19, we are updating our corporate worship policies. We have made several changes to our liturgical practices, see below for more details.

As of the morning of March 12th, there were 12 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Maryland. The new cases are not only from travel but include community transmission. Due to this shift, the CDC and Health Department are no longer looking to contain the virus, they have moved into a process of mitigation. This means it is more important than ever for us to reduce ways that we could share the virus.

We are a Body of Christ and care deeply for each other and our incarnate well-being. Many of the precautions we are encouraged to take can feel isolating and awkward. In the very place where we come to be connected, church, we are asking each other to make space and step back. These necessary precautions are also honoring the preciousness of each life.

We believe that together, it is possible to significantly reduce the number of infections and deaths from this outbreak. We can no longer think about our individual vulnerability, we must consider our communal responsibility to care for one another. Right now, the caring thing to do is be in solidarity with those who are at-risk because of age, health, economics, and other risk factors. We cannot run away, but must find ways to share compassion during this time of increased isolation. We need to be creative and proactive about honoring the divine in each other and cultivate community differently. We are working on creating networks of 4-5 families to be “Buddies” and stay connected to each other.

Be aware that many different groups meet in our building space and you are responsible for washing your hands when you touch common surfaces. Please, also use the hand sanitizer you find throughout the building and bring your own, if possible. We are in the process of having wall mounted hand sanitizer installed. Within our building we are cleaning all “common contact” surfaces like door knobs and light switches on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. On Sunday, the altar guild, ushers, and vergers are wiping down common surfaces after each worship service. Become more aware of what surfaces you have touched AND wash your hands AND don’t touch your face.

For Worship on March 15th:

  • Worship will be held at 8, 9, 11am, and 6pm.
  • All other events on Sunday will be cancelled, including formation, nursery care, coffee hour, and the Turner’s Baby Sprinkle. You are more than welcome to sprinkle the Turners with cards and other no-touch support.
  • Pray-ground Toys – we are sanitizing toys after worship each week.
  • Communion -We will be sharing communion with wafer bread only, there will be no wine shared in the common cup.
  • Peace - We will not touch hands or hug at the passing-of-the-peace. We invite you to honor the Christ in each other with a profound bow, tapping feet together, making a peace sign, or other creative ways to connect at a safe distance.
  • Offering Plate – We will not be passing the offering plate in the middle of worship. At the time of offering, the community is invited to joyfully come forward and put your offering in the plate at the front of the church. If you would like use ACH (automatic withdrawal of your pledge from your bank account), contact our accounting office.
  • Observe Social Distancing – We recommend maintaining a distance of approximately 6 feet. There will obviously be times when this distance collapses passing in hallways, bathrooms, or other narrow places, but becoming aware your proximity to others will help reduce the spread of the virus.
  • Healing Prayer – will still be offered at each service while keeping a safe distance from each other and without physical anointing with oil.
  • Permission to Not Attend Church – If you are at all concerned about your own vulnerability or that of family members, please feel encouraged to stay home and not attend worship. Join us through the livestream for our morning services on Youtube channel

Bulletins are available here to follow along.

For Worship on March 22 and March 29:

Public corporate worship will not be held. We will live-stream worship, and are working out specific details on when and where we will broadcast from.

All Saints’ Campus Center: We are in the decision-making process of our front office and campus center response in light of emerging information. We will make a formal statement soon regarding other events that may be held in our building.

For Meetings and Other Gatherings on the Church Calendar:

  • Observe Social Distancing – We recommend maintaining a distance of approximately 6 feet. There will obviously be times when this distance collapses passing in hallways, bathrooms, or other narrow places, but becoming aware your proximity to others will help reduce the spread of the virus.
  • There will be no shared food and drink – Many groups are in the habit of gathering with refreshments to share. This is not allowed at this time. The group may decide that individuals can bring their own food (brown bag) to the gathering, but not share with one another.
  • Alternatives to in-person meetings – Groups may choose to use the phone, zoom, facetime, or other digital technology to meet without gathering in person. If you have questions about a scheduled meeting for your ministry, contact the ministry leader to learn more. Check the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or World Health Organization (WHO) websites for the most current information.

Here are some useful links, including some helpful videos:

Faithfully yours in Christ,
Mtr. Adrien and Rev. Jess