At Richville United Church of Christ, we seek to provide spiritual guidance and support to our community. Our message of hope, healing, love and compassion is spread daily through our services and involvement with the local community.
We welcome everybody to join us to achieve spiritual balance in their lives and seek answers to their problems.
For more information, please call us at 330-832-1891 and one of our members will be very pleased to help you.
UPDATES REGARDING COVID-19 AND THE CHURCH...
July 3, 2020
We will be resuming in-person worship on Sunday, July 5 (10:30 AM). Below is listed our social distancing and safety protocols, which all in attendance will be required to follow:
GUIDELINES FOR RETURNING TO IN-PERSON WORSHIP FOR RICHVILLE UCC
These guidelines where created using the Heartland Conference UCC recommendations for Phase 3 which include the following:
· 4 weeks declining COVID-19 case counts in your area (we have decided that our church will be looking at a 2 week decline).
· Widespread availability of testing.
· No PPE shortage.
REQUIREMENTS ONCE WE RETURN TO IN-PERSON WORSHIP
1. In–Person Worship of 50 people maximum (many of the guidelines ask for no more than 25 people, but we are confident that, given our sanctuary size, we can safely accommodate 50…and have done so for funerals, under the maximums previously-established by Gov. DeWine’s office).
· Continue holding online worship along with in-person worship of no more than 50 people.
· Encourage those at high-risk to worship online.
· Family units will be permitted to sit together -with an empty pew in front and behind them.
· Single persons/family-units will be spaced 6’ apart in the pew.
· Face masks are required of all in-person worship attendees. All attendees are encouraged to provide their own face mask. If you do not own a face mask, one will be provided for you at the door before entering the church.
· Avoid physical contact with those who are not part of your immediate family unit.
· Cover coughs/sneezes with tissue/inside elbow (dispose of tissues immediately).
· Wash hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer after coming in contact with surfaces and coughing/sneezing.
· Refrain from touching facial areas (eyes, ears, nose).
No Singing at In-Person Worship (we are still discussing the particulars of how to pull this off & how long to maintain this practice).
· Hymns will be played by the organist and worship attendees can hum to themselves.
· All hymnals will be removed from the pews and the words to songs will be printed in the bulletin.
· Special music involving 1-4 people will be permitted on the raised stage of the sanctuary keeping at least the 6’ distance from the first row of worshipers & utilizing individual microphones &/or microphones which pick-up multiple voices free-of-touch).
No Personal Touch Rituals of In-Person Worship (including the following)
· Offering plates will be located in the back of the sanctuary to leave envelopes before or after service. We continue to encourage other means of giving such as using Paypal, online transfers or payments, credit card transactions etc.
· No Fellowship pad and pew Bibles will be used. Attendance will be taken by a designated person including the name of each person present and the pew they were sitting in. Attendees are permitted to bring their own Bibles for personal use only.
· Children’s sermon will take place but the children will remain in the pews and not come forward
· No communion plates will be passed. Individual packaged communion elements will be available in a basket to pick up before entering the sanctuary
· Contact such as hugging or shaking hands with other family units is strongly discouraged.
No Fellowship food before or after worship
· Your Consistory and Church Leaders greatly discourage mingling in the fellowship hall or the parking lot before or after the church service.
· The exterior entrances to the church will be opened at 10:15 AM and closed 15 minutes after the service ends.
· Door handles will be disinfected by the janitor before and after all services.
· Hand sanitizer will be available within all rooms of the church.
Children’s Church and nursery
· Children’s church will take place outside only, weather permitting, encouraging social distancing
· Opening of the nursery will be determined on a weekly basis. If 1-2 children need watched, the adult with them will be required to wear a mask and limit the use of toys.
We are additionally developing protocols if we should discover an individual in our fellowship has tested positive for Covid-19. These include deep cleaning, contact-tracing, notifying our worshippers/health-department (abiding by all HIPPA regulations) & postponing further in-person activities until such a time as we can determine it is safe to regather once more.
Thank you for your time & attention. If you have ANY QUESTIONS, please don’t hesitate to contact Pastor Will, the Safety/Reopening Team, the office &/or your Consistory. We continue to be deeply grateful for how faithful you all have been in these trying days & for all of the ways The LORD has enabled us to remain connected & effective in our mission/ministry amidst the safety measures we’ve been undertaking.
June 3, 2020
While we are NOT yet opening back up for regular, in-person worship (and have many uncertain "benchmarks" to pass & preparations to make), we have slowly started to engage some smaller, more manageable ministries.
Based on the recommendations of the Safety/Reopening Team & the affirmative vote of Consistory, small groups are now permitted to return to the building.
Please read the following for details...
SAFETY PROTOCOLS FOR REOPENING SMALL GROUPS *(We define “Small Groups” as gatherings of 10 people or less)*
Beginning June 1st, 2020, Richville UCC began reengaging our hosting of small group ministries & programs. The following precautions should be observed for all in-person meetings…
· Door handles should be wiped-down with disinfectant prior-to & following gatherings. · Entrance/exit doors should either be attended (opened/closed) by a single individual or propped-open as the group assembles & then again at dispersal. · No “lingering”. Participants should arrive no more than 15 minutes prior to gathering & should leave within 15 minutes of the meeting’s ending. · Attendance charts are to be maintained for each meeting of every group (for potential Contact-Tracing measures). If confidentiality is required, the given group will retain these documents unless/until such a time as they might need to be furnished (in the event of positive COVID tests within the group). · Masks/face-coverings are to be worn. · For the foreseeable future, groups are to use ONLY either the Fellowship Hall or the Sunday School room directly across from the office (“Ruth’s” class). Choice/use of space is to be reported to the church staff. · Only the upstairs restrooms are to be used. · Social-distancing (of 6 foot separations) is to be practiced. · Hand sanitizer will be available within the rooms being used (in addition to the dispensers located all around the building). · At the conclusion of meetings, group-organizers will spray-down the hard-surfaces which have been used (chairs, tables, etc.) with the disinfectant the church provides. This particular cleaner is not to be wiped-off, but allowed to air-dry. · Until further-notice, there are NOT to be refreshments offered at gatherings.
ADDITIONAL PRACTICES: o Avoid physical contact with those who are not part of your immediate family unit. o Cover coughs/sneezes with tissue/inside of elbow (dispose of tissues immediately). o Wash hands after making contact with surfaces/coughing or sneezing/using the restroom. When washing hands, use hot water/soap & wash for at least 20 seconds. o Refrain from touching facial areas (eyes, ears, nose). o Any trash generated by a group should be disposed of immediately following the end of the meeting (trash bags taken to dumpster by the shelter/picnic pavilion).
May 19, 2020
UPDATE ON PLANS TO RETURN TO FORMAL WORSHIP
Your consistory voted at the May meeting to suspend returning to formal worship until July 5, 2020, at the earliest. Our main concern is the well being of our entire flock at Richville UCC. A subcommittee has been formed, with representation from all age groups in our congregation, to discuss how we will come back and what precautions will be observed. This subcommittee will bring recommendations to the Spiritual Life Committee to review, and they in return, will report back to Consistory at the June meeting. As your leadership, we are trying to be proactive during this difficult time.
Conditions with COVID-19 continue to change daily, so we will be diligent in keeping up with the latest recommendations from Governor DeWine and the UCC. Nothing will be set in stone and we are very open to your questions and opinions. Please feel free to contact myself or Pastor Will with any concerns or suggestions. We don’t expect this to be a quick process because of the severe consequences that could occur with rash decisions.
Please look for updates in the Weekly Messenger and we hope to have some guidelines set up by mid June.