As we prepare to re-open our buildings and find new ways of gathering together, the Synod of Victoria and Tasmania have a team of people working on providing advice to congregations about how to proceed.
I encourage everyone involved in Ministry and Mission at St Luke’s to become familiar with these regular updates so that any face to face gathering you are involved in is organised in a way that will keep all participants safe.
This weekly update can be found on the Synod Website here and is updated every Thursday. There is a pastoral letter for the moderator at the beginning of the update linked below which I encourage you to read:
Currently Church Council is working through a recovery checklist to ensure that we are ready to safely open the buildings again. The areas we must consider include:
- How to limit attendance numbers to the maximum 20 people and whether to allow non-members to attend
- Whether attendance by people (including Ministers) in any of the vulnerable groups should be discouraged
- How to ensure that persons who are unwell do not attend
- How to ensure social distancing is maintained, including on entering and exiting the building
- What changes to worship will be required to ensure the safety of all attendees, including eliminating/minimising the touching of shared items (eg microphones, books, pulpits, collection plates)
- How to ensure personal hygiene and building cleanliness meet minimum standards. See new Safework Australia guide linked to Recovery Checklist at: https://victas.uca.org.au/ download/668/faq/8852/recovery-actonplan-checklist
- Ensuring that bathrooms are properly provisioned with soap, disposable handtowels and sanitiser
- What signage may be required to ensure the observance of all measures by attendees at all times
- How to maintain a record of all people who attend, including contact details, and
- How you will respond to unwell people attending, and attendees with suspected/ confirmed Covid-19
As you can appreciate, some of these are tricky issues to address. For now, we have set up a station in the foyer where we ask everyone attending the building to sanitise their hands and sign in and out of the building. This is so that we can contact anyone who may have been potentially exposed to someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 as soon as we are made aware.
Posters have been placed around the building advising people on the steps we must take to keep everyone safe while we are in the building. We will keep you advised of other measures as we put them in place.
If you wish to use the St Luke’s buildings to meet or for other church business, please contact Robyn to arrange booking the space and to receive any further information you will need to host the activity safely.
Grace and Peace to you all,