Initial Reopening Starting August 23, 2020

Dear Friends in Christ,

 

We write today with exciting news: we will re-open for in-person worship beginning this Sunday, August 23! Don't head to the Cathedral just yet, though--please read this email in its entirety. This message includes very important information shared here that you will need to know before returning to campus for worship.

Reasons Not to Come to Campus

In order for in-person worship to work and for it to continue to be a possibility even after this first Sunday, we all have to take personal responsibility for our health and the health of others. That means not coming to campus if:

  • You have tested positive for COVID-19, or have recently been exposed to someone who has tested positive.
  • You have symptoms of COVID-19 (please click here to read a list of symptoms).
  • You have existing health conditions that make you more susceptible to or at a heightened risk of complications if you contract COVID-19.

 

While You're On Campus for Worship

  • Masks that cover both your nose and mouth must be worn at all times, both indoors and outside.
  • Observing a social distance of six feet or greater between yourself and others is mandatory at all times. We know it's exciting to see people after we have been apart for so long, but please refrain from hugging, embracing, touching or approaching others.

Service Schedule

Starting Sunday, August 23, our service schedule will be as follows. Both services will be taking place in the Cathedral:

  • Sundays at 9 am
  • 10 am - 10:30 am: Allotted time for cleaning in between the two morning services
  • Sundays at 11 am

Both Sunday services will be Morning Prayer; these will be spoken services, and will include organ music but no congregational singing or choir.

Worship Logistics: Registration, Arrival Times, Seating, and Number of People in Attendance

  • There will be 35 socially-distanced seating areas available at each service; each seating area can accommodate one to five people (i.e., a seating area is one pew box). The maximum number of people we can accommodate at each service will be 75 individuals. Registration will be open until either all 35 seating areas are reserved or 75 individuals are registered, whichever comes first.
  • An online registration link will be circulated on Wednesdays prior to the following Sunday's service (so, for this coming Sunday, August 23, expect to receive a sign-up link in your inbox on Wednesday, August 19 in the afternoon). You may only sign up those who live in your household, please do not sign up anyone who does not live in your home.
  • Once registration is full, the sign-up will close. If registration does not fill, registration will close on Friday at noon.
  • For those who do not use computers, there will be a phone number to call and place a reservation for the upcoming Sunday. Information regarding this registration method will be sent via postal mail to the individuals who do not use computers.
  • After you register, you will receive an email in advance of the Sunday service telling you your arrival time on campus, which entrance to use, and which cohort you have been assigned to. This is very important information, so please be on the lookout. Knowing when to arrive, which door to use, and where in the Cathedral to sit (based upon your assigned cohort) will help ensure that traffic flows as smoothly as possible the day of the service.
  • Seating will be by zones (based upon your cohort); there is not general admission seating. Households will be assigned the same cohort.
  • Greeters will be on-hand to guide you to your assigned seating locations. Signage will be placed both inside the Cathedral and out as well. Please follow instructions given by greeters as well as all signage while on campus.
  • We apologize, but the elevator will not be available at this time. Please use the ramp (located on the Gervais St. side of the Cathedral, closest to the churchyard and Sumter St) if you need an accessible entrance. If you need access to the Cathedral and cannot use the ramp, please contact us ahead of time to make arrangements.
  • Access to bathroom facilities will also be restricted during this time.

Childcare, Formation, Fellowship

For the time being, we will not have childcare available. If you bring your children along for worship, they will need to be seated with you during the service. We will also not be holding any in-person formation (children's, youth, or adult) at this time. This may be subject to change at a later date, but for now, we will only be hosting worship services on Sunday morning.

Once the service concludes, we ask that you depart from the exit you have been assigned. While it's tempting (and quite natural!) to want to greet people you haven't seen in awhile, we ask that you please do not engage in any fellowship after the service at this time.

If You're Not Ready to Worship at Trinity Quite Yet

We understand! Please know that the recorded services we have been livestreaming on our website and Facebook page on Sundays will continue; not only during this initial reopening, but even after we fully re-open and are back to "normal."

Visiting Other Areas on Campus

At this time, we ask that you do not enter any other buildings than the Cathedral on Sunday mornings (please note this includes bathrooms), and that you use only your assigned entrance to do so. During the week, if you would like to meet with clergy or staff, please make an appointment with that person before coming to the Cathedral. Masks must be worn at all times on Trinity's campus, both during the week and on Sundays, and both inside and out.

This is our initial re-opening plan, and we may add in additional services at a later time if there is demand. Additionally, as COVID-19 infection rates decline, we will be able to open services to more people and begin to re-institute other practices (Holy Communion, congregational singing, etc.). If, on the other hand, COVID-19 infection rates become worse, in-person worship may again be suspended for a time.

 

We know this is a lot of information to digest at once. If you have any questions, please contact a member of our clergy (full clergy and staff listing found here). We will be releasing the registration link on Wednesday, and will send any updates as needed. We look forward to worshiping with you in-person at the Cathedral on Sunday!