FIREBAUGH-MENDOTA UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
We want you to know that the care of your well-being is our utmost concern; for this reason, we are requesting our congregants and visitors to adhere to the following guidelines in compliance with California’s ‘COVID-19 INDUSTRY GUIDANCE: Places of Worship’, with CDC Guidelines, and with the protocols established by the California-Nevada Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church.
Key Prevention Practices
Physical distancing to the maximum extent possible when arriving, when seated, and when exiting
Use of face coverings by employees, volunteers, congregants and visitors
Frequent hand washing and regular cleaning and disinfection by staff and volunteers
Training employees and volunteers on these and other elements of the COVID-19 prevention plan
We are asking all congregants and visitors to follow the guidelines below; please let us know if you have any questions, comments or concerns; greeters will be available to provide directions for you upon your arrival:
Follow social distancing guidelines of six feet when arriving to the church, while you are at church, and when you are leaving the church (outdoors and indoors). Seating is arranged to accommodate for proper social distancing. Persons are required to sit with others from their household only. Childcare is not available at this time; children are required to stay with their household groups.
Face coverings are required when entering, walking around, and when exiting the church. In compliance with the latest guidelines for California, all persons are encouraged to wear their face coverings over their nose and mouth throughout the worship service. If for any reason you experience difficulty breathing or other discomfort while wearing a face covering, face coverings may be lowered to aid with breathing. Face coverings should be returned to covering the nose and mouth as soon as you are comfortable. Disposable face masks are available upon request.
Touchless Temperature Screening will be conducted upon arrival using a no contact Infrared Thermometer. Persons with a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher will be asked to return home and to follow-up with their local health care provider for COVID-19 testing if other symptoms exist.
Engaging in handshakes, hugs, and similar greetings that break physical distance is to be avoided at all times. Be creative and greet others with a wave, virtual hugs or other non-contact greetings that are within social distancing guidelines.
Two hand sanitizer stations are available for your use: (1)—Located at the church entrance (1)—Located in front of the bathrooms. Please use hand sanitizer when entering and leaving the church.
While our worship service will include music, you are strongly encouraged to refrain from singing to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 transmission. You will be invited to stand, to dance, and to hum along as the Spirit moves you. If you feel compelled to sing, a face covering will be required while singing.
The CDC states everyone is at risk of getting COVID-19. Older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19. Based on what we know now, those at high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19 are:
People 65 years and older
People who live in a nursing home or long-term care facility
People with compromised immune systems
People of all ages with underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled, including chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma, serious heart conditions, severe obesity, diabetes, chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis, and liver disease
Additional Measures We Are Taking
Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocols
We are performing thorough cleanings of high traffic areas including entry ways, bathrooms and offices frequently disinfecting commonly used surfaces including doorknobs, toilets, hand washing facilities, pulpits and podiums, donation boxes, altars, and pews and seating areas.
Church hymnals and Bibles will be stored away and the church will provide single-use and digital copies for bulletins and announcements; distributed materials will be placed on chairs prior to opening for worship.
The church will use cleaning products approved for use against COVID-19 as found on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-approved list and follow product instructions.
Touchless hand sanitizer stations will be available in the narthex entrance and in front of the bathrooms. Offering plates will placed in a location where congregants and guests can drop their offerings into the plate without touching or passing the plate. Offering plates will be cleaned and disinfected after each use.
Physical Distancing Guidelines
Physical distancing of six to twelve feet between workers, staff, and congregants/visitors has been defined as per the Indoor Seating Plan. FMUMC will use the church social hall for worship using non-fixed chairs to optimize the seating per household units while maintaining proper social distancing guidelines. Members of the same household may be seated together but should maintain at least six feet of distance from other households. Greeters will help people maintain distances when arriving and departing.
Children are to remain in the care of those in their household and not interact with children of other households at any time. Daycare services have been suspended until further notice.
Greeters will help people find places to sit and stand that are at least six feet apart from other guests/household groups and ask congregants/visitors to arrive and leave in single groups to minimize the crossflow of people. We will welcome and dismiss congregants and visitors in an orderly way to maintain physical distancing and to minimize crossflow of traffic.
The sanctuary and kitchen will be closed until further notice.
All persons are discouraged from engaging in handshakes, hugs, and similar greetings that break physical distance; remember to wave or use other greetings. Singing is discouraged during worship due to the increased likelihood for transmission from contaminated exhaled droplets. For those who desire to sing during worship, a face mask will be required.