Dear ones of St. C’s,
Doesn’t it feel like this in-between time in this pandemic is lasting forever? 70% of people in King County are vaccinated, community spread is down, and the governor’s orders have lifted, which is all excellent news. But children under 12 are still not able to be vaccinated, which leaves a population that we love and hold dear vulnerable. We will continue to wear masks for and with our children.
We will slowly be loosening covid restrictions in the coming weeks. Beginning this Sunday anyone who is speaking in the service can take their mask off while they are speaking. The presider will not wear a mask throughout the service because she does so much speaking and because of the headset it makes it very cumbersome. Anyone who presides and does not wear a mask will be fully vaccinated.
You will also notice we will slowly start passing more things. The greeter may hand out the bulletin and the people bringing up the elements may hand them to the presider. Starting in the near future we will pass the plate and have acolytes help set and clear the table. If you are not comfortable with participating in these things, you are still able to get up and drop money in the plate or pick up your own bulletin off the table.
Starting this Sunday people will be able to come forward to receive Eucharist directly from the hands of the presider. An usher will release households in a way that is more spread out then pre-covid. If you do not want the bread that the presider is touching you can receive a gluten free bread that is covered in plastic or ask for a blessing instead.
I know all of these precautions have been cumbersome, but I hope you feel and know that it is because all those who enter the doors of St. Columba’s are precious to us and we want to do whatever we can to mitigate any harm, while also preserving and supporting this special community we have created together over time. If you do have questions or concerns please reach out to me.
I just thank God everyday that we can see each other, eat together, break bread, and feel the presence of one another once again. It is good for the soul.