SPECIAL NewsFlash – Saturday, March 14, 2020
Please know that the Task Force met again this morning and was joined by the Director of Music to discuss next steps given the most current information.
Based on a review of what is happening at other communities of faith, the decision was made to hold a shortened worship service this Sunday and to advise the congregation that we are CANCELLING services for the next few weeks with the goal of returning on April 5th (Palm Sunday), depending on the situation at the time.
Anyone attending worship tomorrow will be asked to sanitize their hands upon entering the building and will be directed to sit in pews that have been marked with a GREEN X to show the recommended space required for social distancing.
- We have alerted our tenants that the church building will be closed until April 5th. They are contacting their own stakeholders.
- The Director of Music has emailed the choir.
- Church groups/committees should make arrangements to meet via phone or virtually if a meeting is required. Committee chairs should contact their group members to advise accordingly
- The Open Cupboard will also be closed until after April 5th.
The United Church of Canada has updated their website with more resources on how communities of faith can meet online – see https://www.united-church.ca/
- We are closely monitoring the evolving COVID-19 situation. The health and safety of everyone at St. Paul’s United Church Ajax is our highest priority and primary concern.
- A Task Force comprised of the Minister, Past Chair of Council, M and P Co-Chair and the Office Administrator are meeting to implement our local response following recommendations from the United Church of Canada, the Public Health Agency of Canada and local public health to monitor the risk and take protective actions as needed.
- Signage has been posted at all entrances to the church building asking people to not enter if they have any COVID-19 symptoms and/or a recent travel history to an affected country.
- We have ordered more hand sanitizer stations to place in the west, south and front doors.
- We have removed the bibles and hymnals from the pew racks and wiped down the pews.
- Additional signage has been posted in the washrooms to support effective hand washing.
- Sunshine is following the public school directive and will be shutting down for a further two weeks after the March break.
- We have triaged the congregational phone list and developed a phone tree to ensure timely communication. Thank you to Linda W, Helen D, Colleen M, Bernie R, Janette S and Diane F for volunteering to make calls, if necessary, to advise people of any changes to the worship schedule and to check on the well-being of our church family.
- We are using the church website – www.stpaulsajax.org – and SPUC social media pages – Facebook/Twitter – to provide updates and more information on the status of church events.
- Rev. Cordelia is always available to offer pastoral support and guidance via the church office or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please know that as the situation continues to develop, we will continue to update you with pertinent information.
We are being encouraged by the United Church of Canada to respond to this situation with Compassion, Prevention and Prayer. As a community of faith we know that God is always with us as we strive to be faithful disciples in these challenging times.