Dear Friends in Christ,
On March 13, our congregation’s Leadership Circle chose to suspend public worship services. This was a difficult decision, especially during the Easter Season, but our commitment to the wellbeing of our community mandated that we follow a safe and prudent path. Over the past nine weeks, our congregation’s leaders have studied a variety of recommendations from our denomination’s leaders, CDC alerts, and medical studies related to the Coronavirus. We have observed that enclosed spaces, such as sanctuaries, where people speak and sing, have led to significant outbreaks of the Coronavirus.
Earlier this week, after consulting with the medical professionals, conducting a poll of congregational members, and studying both Governor Baker’s Phasing In process and the Southeastern Conference of the United Church of Christ’s Phasing In document, our congregation’s Leadership Circle and Building and Grounds Team has recommended that we wait to September 6 to begin public worship in our sanctuary. Our decision is congruent with the Southeastern Conference of the United Church of Christ’s counsel that congregations defer public worship to the end of the summer.
However, we are considering the possibility of outdoor and/or parking lot worship later this summer, based on our ability to ensure the safety of congregants and visitors as well as the current Coronavirus conditions on Cape Cod. We are also compiling a thorough checklist of what we must do to ensure that our building is as virus free as possible.
Returning to our sanctuary is important to all of us. We believe that it is a holy place and we yearn to be back home. We also strongly believe that God is present everywhere and can be experienced wherever a community gathers for prayer and worship. We care about you and are doing everything possible to ensure the health of our congregation. South Congregational Church is committed to sharing God’s good news, aimed at the healing of body, mind, spirit, and relationships. Our congregation is alive and well and reaching out to the larger the community as well as its own members.
We will be continuing our Sunday morning services, adult and children’s faith formation programs, and weekday morning prayer on Zoom throughout the summer and beyond. If you need help with Zoom, please contact us. We are also strongly committed to outreach to Cape Cod and the world during this time of pandemic.
Thank you for your support. We welcome your comments and counsel.
Nancy Beauchamp, Moderator
Bruce Epperly, Pastor