IMPRINT CHURCH (TENTATIVE) REOPENING PLAN
Unprecedented. The new normal. Strange. Challenging. Whatever adjective that you choose to describe the craziness of 2020 will certainly be met with nods of approval! It has also been a difficult year for our church. Ministry happens incarnationally. In other words, it is through the life-together connections with other people that we grow in our faith and are challenged in our unbelief. Without this, we don’t have the encouragement of seeing other people’s faith, we don’t have the exhortation of really listening to other people’s stories, and we don’t get the benefit of trying to apply the Word of God to all our life circumstances together. This is why we have said all along that Imprint Groups are so important to us. I imagine we all recognize the benefit of being together regularly now!
For this reason, we are looking forward to getting back together again. We have communicated a bit about our plan to follow the phased approach to opening Washington again in the context of our church, but we thought we’d send out an email outlining what it specifically looks like for Imprint to reopen in phases, as well. This is difficult to communicate for several reasons: (1) there are no dates attached to the phases, (2) when we have communicated a plan in the past, it has changed within a few days, (3) coronavirus seems to be making a resurgence as our economy opens back up, and (4) there are many different opinions on how and when we should reopen. Regardless, we want to give you some idea of what is happening at each stage along the way for Imprint Church to give you something to look forward to, and hopefully pave the way for mutual discipleship to happen in the context of our church community gatherings again. We would ask that you would read this with grace knowing that the Imprint Church Elder Board and Lead Team has been prayerfully planning this through the “love, honor, wisdom, and serve” paradigm we wrote to you about a month ago.
Churches are unique in that they are setup for “superspreader” viral events — as we have seen happen in various places around the United States when churches have reopened. This is because as churches gather we sing, hug, shake hands, have Kid’s ministry, and have many “high touch” areas. So we have to take all these things into account. Moreover, we also want to maintain a healthy witness to our community, build unity within the body of Imprint Church, and make sure we can care for the people that the Lord brings to us with proper sanitation and social distancing. In order to do these things, we plan to open Imprint Church in the following phases:
We are currently in Phase 2 of our reopening plan for King County and the “stay home, stay healthy” plan is still in effect. However, for religious organizations, indoor services are allowed at a place of worship with up to 25% capacity or up to 200 people, whichever is less, so long as six feet of physical distancing can be achieved between households and masks are worn. Outdoor services are allowed on an organization’s property. In home services/counseling can happen with up to 5 people, and of course, churches can livestream their services.
For Imprint Church this means that our buildings are still officially closed, but church staff are allowed to come in for essential duties. Worship Gatherings, ministry events, and podcasts will mostly be done online. Special gatherings allowed on Imprint Church property will only happen with permission, and when these events occur, we will adhere to the mandated COVID-19 Organizational safety practices such as proper signage, cleaning/disinfecting high touch areas, and mandated masks (while inside the building, or outside with less than 6 feet of social distancing).
We also plan to hold at least one worship Gathering outside at Imprint Church Woodinville. This is currently scheduled for the morning of July 12, 2020 at 10 AM. And we intend to hold another outdoor Gathering at Imprint Woodinville in August, as well. Between the logistical issues of planning outdoor worship Gatherings every Sunday, and the fact that we are not really allowed to be near one another in this phase, once/month Gatherings seemed like it would give us something to look forward to each month as we socially distant gather as a church community.
When Phase 3 happens for King County, this means that religious organizations are allowed to hold gatherings with 50% capacity or up to 400 people, whichever is less. This also means that non-essential businesses will be opening to a greater capacity in our county.
For Imprint Church this means that we can reopen Imprint Woodinville for regular office hours, Bible studies, and other preplanned, approved Gatherings. Imprint Groups will kick off again and we’ll encourage them to meet in homes to take part in the online Sunday Worship Gatherings together. A modified Student Ministries program will begin.
When Phase 4 kicks off, King County allows for gatherings of any sizes and a resuming of public interactions, with social distancing.
This means that weekly, in-person Worship Gatherings will fully start up again. Imprint Woodinville and Imprint Bothell will officially be one church in one location (Woodinville), as we can’t yet count on Cascadia College to allow us to return to Mobius Hall by then. Social distancing will be in effect, which will likely require multiple Sunday morning Worship Gatherings. We will still stream at least one of our Gatherings online each week for those that choose to stay home. Imprint Kids Ministry will re-open with modified plans such as pre-registration and cleaning between Gatherings. We will also have a modified hospitality plan (e.g., no coffee or food allowed), and a modified response time (e.g., no communion, and no up-close prayer). Student Ministries will also fully resume at this time.
While this is not an official phase for King County, for Imprint Church this will mean that Mobius Hall has opened for rentals again so we can relaunch as 1 church in 2 locations. Imprint Kids will be fully functioning, and our hospitality and response times all go back to normal.
IN THE MEANTIME
Here are a few ways to stay involved in the life of the church:
We are currently streaming our Worship Gatherings on Facebook live on Sunday mornings at 10am. Please join us! You do not need a Facebook account to watch. Click the link below to visit the Facebook page we are streaming from.
JOIN US FOR PRAYER ON ZOOM
We are currently meeting twice a week on Zoom for prayer. We meet on Monday nights from 5:30-6pm and Wednesday nights from 8:30-9pm. We send an email out with a Zoom link before each meeting. Interested in joining? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
SUMMER BOOK CLUBS
Summer Book Clubs are a chance for you to gather around great works of literature and theology with a small group for the purpose of growing together as students of Jesus, learning to understand the human experience and our culture so we can communicate the Gospel well.
If you’re interested in signing up, or want more info on what groups are available, check out the link below! We will add more groups in the future as well!
ABOUND IN HOPE PODCAST
We started a new podcast recently to help show you how the Gospel applies to your every day live and compels you toward Gratitude and Generosity. Check it out wherever you find podcasts or at the link below!