It was great news to hear from the Provincial Government on Tuesday that we can now plan for re-opening our buildings and in person worship. We are working with the St Paul’s staff team and volunteers to plan for this in stages. We do so knowing that we are still in a pandemic and people are dying in BC and that the Province may order restrictions or changes at any time.
We also want to acknowledge that each of us have different levels of anxiety and tolerance levels. We need to be mindful of this as we progress in reopening – a good number will be wary of physical contact (hugs, handshakes, etc) and, of course, for a variety of reasons not everyone will be vaccinated. So we can express our love for one another in respecting personal space and boundaries.
There are a number of things that are unclear from the initial announcement which will affect how and when we can re-open – clarification on these points is being sought.
In terms of Sunday worship, we do know that no indoor in person worship will be possible until mid-June, but early indications are that Sunday in person worship may well not start until July when a different set of rules will apply. While Philip is actively considering a weekly Eucharist on Tuesdays from mid-June, we need to be mindful that we have one priest and we already have seven services a week with the prospect of that rising to nine (before COVID it was three). You will see that we are committed to providing worship and community in person AND online as best we are able.
In terms of the Advocacy Office, staff returns, Labyrinth, etc these will all be worked on and we will advise you as we go along what is happening and when.
Please do continue to look out for one another as we transition out of restrictions into this exciting new season.
With our love, David, Drina and Philip