GUIDELINES FOR RESUMING ON-CAMPUS MINISTRIES
Since the suspension of on-campus programs and ministries on March 15, 2020, the Ministry Leadership Council Executive Team – a team of lay and staff leadership – has been meeting to guide the church through the pandemic. Over the last month, that team has been working with local and national health and religious officials to create guidelines for reopening the Hyde Park United Methodist campuses. The following is a general outline and timeline of those guidelines, and closely follows the “phased-in” approach recommended by the Centers for Disease Control:
PHASE ZERO (CURRENT STATUS): CAMPUS CLOSED
- Online worship services only, and all small groups and committees meet online.
- Open Arms continues in a modified format to offer feeding ministries, observing necessary
- Ministry Offices closed
PHASE ONE: Begins after two consecutive weeks of a downward trajectory of positive tests and confirmed cases of COVID-19
- Online worship services only
- Groups of ≤ 10 may return, or a maximum of 25% room capacity where social distance guidelines can be met).
PHASE TWO: Begins after two additional consecutive weeks of a downward trajectory of positive tests and confirmed cases of COVID-19
- Online worship services only
- Groups of ≤ 50 may return, or a maximum of 25% room capacity where social distance guidelines can be met.
PHASE THREE: Begins after two additional consecutive weeks of a downward trajectory of positive tests and confirmed cases of COVID-19
- Online worship continues, with considerations made to offer live worship gatherings for groups. Those gatherings continue all safety protocols, including social distancing and prohibitions against singing and physical interaction.
- Groups of ≥ 50 may return, with continued precautions, not to exceed 25% room capacity or where social distance guidelines cannot be met.
PHASE FOUR: Centers for Disease Control issues guidance allowing the resumption of such essential corporate practices as public singing and spoken recitation, and a relaxation of physical distancing requirements. Such improved conditions may be prompted by the development of an effective treatment or vaccine.
- All onsite programs and ministries resume, including public worship
For comments and questions, and to request the full set of guidelines,
Email Peggy Hisey, Executive Director
Members of the Ministry Leadership Council (MLC) Executive Team:
Rachel Burns and Jonathan Brill, Lay Leaders
Wendy Anastasiou, Chairperson, Board of Trustees
Bryan Hull, Chairperson, Committee on Finance
Claire Enick, Chairperson, Staff-Parish Relations Committee
Eddie Suarez, Generosity Team
Meagan Kempton, Church Business Administrator
Lynn Osborne, Comptroller
Peggy Hisey, Executive Director
Magrey deVega, Senior Pastor
In consultation with:
Hyde Park United Methodist Staff
Dr. Ryan Pedigo, Director of the Office of Public Health Preparedness,
Taylor Burton Edwards and Dawn Chesser, Worship Consultants, The Liturgy Folks
These guidelines draw from several ecclesial resources:
- “Resuming Care-Filled Worship and Sacramental Life During a Pandemic” by The Ecumenical Consultation on Protocols for Worship, Fellowship, and Sacraments
- “Returning to Church” by the Wisconsin Council of Churches
- “Returning to Public Worship: Theological and Practical Considerations” by the Presbyterian Church of the USA
- “Guidance for In-Person Worship and Ministry During COVID-19” by the Florida Annual Conference of the UMC