UUC Continues to Require Vaccinations, Masking at Church
Building Entry: Despite recent and pending changes in local, State and national vaccination checking and indoor masking requirements for most venues, UUC will keep our indoor masking and proof of vaccination protocols in place through the end of March for all entering the church building. We will reassess our requirements based on local coronavirus trends and data at that time. For now, we choose to side with protecting the most vulnerable in our community, including our unvaccinated little ones and all who are at high risk for serious illness.
Coffee & Conversations on Sundays: Facemasks are required in Nathan Johnson Hall and elsewhere in the building, and must be replaced immediately after each bite or sip. Please be consistent in using the “lift & sip” technique. If this is difficult for you, please forego a stop in Nathan Johnson Hall or choose to visit outside.
Singing: As UUC Music Director Karen Thomas has explained, singing at church remains a high-risk activity. Singing and humming create more aerosols (tiny airborne particles less than 100 microns in size) than speaking does. We are taking care to return vocal music to our Sunday Services in measured steps. Choirs will be wearing special 3-layer singing masks and will perform from the choir loft only, along with other health safety measures. Until further notice singing (or even humming) in the congregation is not OK, says Karen. Returning to everyone singing does depend upon the congregation’s willingness to observe our safety protocols. Let’s keep everyone healthy by not vocalizing music in any way, even when it’s a favorite hymn. Karen monitors singing risks carefully, and will announce changes in our practices as it is safe do so.
Including Young Children: As of March 20, we will begin offering Sprouts Childcare during the 9:30 worship service in addition to during the 11:15 service. This supports participation of choir members who are parents, and allows families to attend church with all their children. UUC families have been showing up fully masked since the building re-opened. In nearly all cases, even children age two are reliably masked. Infants, for whom masking is not considered safe, may attend in the chapel with family members. Elementary-aged children are also welcome to take advantage of Sprouts Childcare during the 9:30 service for creative activities.
High Quality Masking: UUC attendees are encouraged to upgrade their masks to N95 or KN95 models, which are now widely available in most stores that carry general health care supplies, or from reputable online sellers. UUC does offer surgical-style facemasks at the Greeter stations near upper & lower entrances. Attendees who need to replace worn and ill-fitting masks are invited to pick one up. Masks must cover the nose and mouth at all times, fitting tightly against the face on all sides.