June 10, 2020
Dear Fellow Parishioners,
Christ is amongst us! Is and always shall be!
Our Hierarchs have given their blessings to our parish to begin preparations for reopening! Therefore, we plan to open on Sunday, June 21, with certain guidelines and restrictions (SEE BELOW).
Keeping in mind that we need to be in compliance with the state and local restrictions for Northampton County (we are in the "yellow phase"- moderate restrictions), and with directives from our Hierarchs, the Council has outlined the attached/included Covid guidelines document.
In addition to these Covid guidelines, please remember the following:
- The directive that states parishioners over 65 should remain at home has been rescinded. But parishioners with health issues are advised to stay home. Please use good judgment and know your risks!
- No infants and very young children are to receive Communion because Communicants will be instructed to open their mouths very wide so as not to touch the spoon! This is difficult to tell very young children.
- Communicants should not approach if they have not received Confession. We have been away too long during this period without Sacraments.
- Father will offer confessions by appointment only! Please refer to Item #11 on the attached Covid guidelines.
- Do not congregate in the social hall before or after Liturgy. There will be no coffee hours until further notice.
These procedures are necessary during this “yellow phase” of reopening and we hope that this will be a limited period. However, when our area will be advanced into the “green phase”, the number of people allowed to gather may be relaxed, but we will still need to maintain sanitary guidelines. Other items will be reviewed and revised as needed, i.e. elevator usage, when we are advanced into "green."
Further information will be posted via email, our Parish website, and our Facebook page as it becomes available.
Please continue to stay safe and healthy. We pray that we will soon be able to worship together safely and in His Name!
Father Oleg Kravchenko Martha X. Misko
Pastor Parish Board President
GUIDELINES FOR CHURCH REOPENING UNDER COVID-19 “PHASE YELLOW “
- A team of volunteers will conduct a complete sanitization of the church before the first Liturgy of reopening.
- During Northampton County/Pennsylvania “yellow phase” (as of June 5), groups of no more than 25 are permitted. Therefore, sign-up charts will be available on the Parish website for Liturgy attendance for upcoming weeks. The deadline for sign-ups will be 7:00 PM on Saturday evening before Sunday Liturgy! If you do not have access to the internet, please call Father Oleg. Father will then add your name to the list if space is available.
- The exterior door of the church will remain unlocked and open only for the first 15 minutes of Liturgy. The door to the hall will remain locked. Please be on time!
- There will be a “vestibule greeter”, masked and gloved, who will admit only those who have signed up in advance. In addition, attendance will be recorded for tracking purposes as well as the attendee’s temperature.
- Everyone will wear masks. Hand sanitizer will be available in the vestibule.
- The elevator will not be operational.
- Seating in the pews will be indicated to accommodate social distancing.
- Should parishioners use the restrooms, they will be instructed via posters to wash hands and wipe down exposed surfaces before leaving. Sanitizing wipes will be available.
- Everyone, including children, will remain in their pews except for Communion.
- Communicants will approach maintaining social distancing.
- Confession will be heard by appointment only! Sign-ups are available on the Parish website or by calling Father Oleg. Confessions will not be heard the morning of the Sunday Liturgy!
- There will be no choir.
- All printed volumes will be removed from the pews. Attendees are encouraged to bring personal prayer books.
- Offerings will be deposited in a basket in a stationary location.
- There will be no “kissing” of holy objects.
- There will be a complete sanitizing after each Liturgy.
- The weekly Bulletin will be online. Father will send via USPS hard copies if requested.
- All services will continue to be live-streamed on the Parish Facebook page.