Because of the recommended social distancing practices currently being recommended, the FCUCC-GF Council met via Zoom. Following are highlights of the meeting.
To deal with the threat of coronavirus, major decisions were made at this meeting.
- Traditional worship was suspended through April and is planned to resume the first Sunday in May. This may change depending on the status of the pandemic.
- Work is being done to provide a livestream worship that will take place at the traditional 11:00 hour on Sunday. Livestream options include Facebook livestream, Youtube, and Zoom. CUMC members will be invited to join in the virtual worship and the worship will be conducted as a joint service.
- Church staff and leaders will be involved in the creation of a meaningful worship experience. Staff will continue to be paid since their duties will continue but will change to create and accommodate a virtual church environment.
- Ways will be explored to provide the worship experience to individuals uncomfortable with using the technology used to provide the virtual worship.
- A virtual format for Sunday School will be developed to deliver that program to the growing number of youth in that program. Virtual Sunday School will be provided at a time different from the worship time so parents, and youth, will be able to participate in worship, also.
- With Easter being one of the Sundays on which traditional worship is suspended, it was suggested that the Sunday we return to traditional worship be a “resurrection” Sunday.
- The Good News newsletter will be published weekly for the duration of the worship suspension. A donations envelope will be included in one newsletter each month.
- Activities held at the church will be curtailed for the duration.
- Zoom will be used to provide opportunities for individuals to “keep in touch” and a group of members will be formed to check on others each week.
- Using Zoom, virtual Sip ‘N’ Chats will be scheduled and held.
- Members are reminded to maintain their donations and pledges during this time either by sending the donations to the church,making the donations with electronic payments, or by making donations via the website.
The Council was reminded that the organ celebration scheduled for March 22 has been cancelled due to the coronavirus issues. The celebration will be re-scheduled for a later date, likely the fall.
The Growth and Vitality Board informed the Council that the new web page has been developed by member Erica Mays. Before the site goes live, Council members were provided with log on information that will enable them to see the site. The site will go live in the next week, or so. The URL will be the same – https://greatfallsucc.org – it will just link to the new site instead of the old one. An email will be sent to all FCUCC members informing them when the new site goes live.
The new web site has a link that enables donations to be made through PayPal. Council members were reminded that PayPal charges 2.25% per transaction so donations are reduced by that amount. Website donors will be offered the option of paying the PayPal fee so their entire donation goes to the church.
The Council voted to request funds from the Memorial Fund Corporation to support Christian Service Board community outreach efforts.
Church security issues were discussed. The Worship Board was asked to explore educational opportunities that can be offered to church staff, leaders, and members regarding this topic.
The next meeting of the Council will be on April 20, 2020, 6:30 PM