Good day siblings in Christ,
There are a couple of important announcements and a fun one today.
The fun one is is Christmas caroling this Friday around the Harmon area. We will gather at 6:45 p.m. and depart at 7:00 p.m. to bring a little joy to the neighborhood. We will be outside and still masked as we sing. It should be a fun time as we walk the neighborhood singing Christmas songs.
Now one of two important announcements. As of this morning, there is a new mask mandate in NY state from Gov. Hochul. It states that all business who do not check for vaccination status must require masks until further notice. This is to help stop the spread of the new variants. During worship, we already have a mask requirement, so this will not change worship. It will change how we do small groups throughout the week. If you are in a small group, such as AA, NA, Girl Scouts, quilting, or Bible study, the leader can ask whether or not everyone has been vaccinated. If the leader does not want to do this, we will require masks to be worn. Again note–this is currently a NYS requirement. Currently, our staff members are all vaccinated and boosted. I remove my mask during preaching only for ease of preaching and I am normally 6-12 feet away from everyone.
The second important announcement is not a requirement, but a recommendation. Yesterday, I asked the council if we will proceed with Christmas Eve services and everyone felt confident since there are now vaccines, we know more than before, and there are stronger masks widely available. This is where the recommendation comes. If you plan on attending Christmas Eve services, it is my and the council’s recommendation that a KN95 be worn, especially for the evening service. Again, this is just a recommendation. Cloth masks are about a level 1 protection and a KN95 mask is about a level 4. I have placed an order for a box of KN95 masks to be available for Christmas Eve and with luck they should be available if individuals do not have one and would like one. We are recommending it because there will be likely be more people in worship and there will be a lot more singing due to our wonderful Christmas songs. It will be a joyous evening.