What to expect when in-person services resume

Members, friends, and visitors are welcome to attend Sunday services in person in the First U Meeting House beginning on August 8 at 10am. This summer service will also be live-streamed on First U’s YouTube channel, as usual.

Even though our Meeting House will look almost the same as before the pandemic, the guidelines our governing board has put in place will make the experience somewhat different. Our goal is to keep everyone in our faith community as safe and healthy as possible, with special concern for those most vulnerable among us.

This trial opening before our regular church year resumes in the fall will give us a chance to try out and fine-tune the new policies and procedures in place. We are guided by our UU principles and the latest advice from our local, state, and national health professionals.

Meeting House Guidelines

Here are the guidelines for attending services in the Meeting House:

  • Everyone will be required to wear a mask during the services and maintain social distancing. Extra masks will be available at the doors. Special accommodations are made for people with disabilities unable to wear a mask and children under 5.
  • Seating will be in every other row, with non-designated pews taped off. Families will be asked to sit together in their pods. Balconies will be closed unless needed for overflow.
  • Doors and windows will be open for air circulation.
  • Music will be instrumental, rather than vocal, during services.
  • Food and drink service will resume later in the church year, when safety permits.
  • To honor comfort levels, hugs, handshakes, touches, and other shows of affection will be offered only with consent.
  • People will be asked to exit the Meeting House by the door closest to them.
  • Committees and other small groups may use other campus buildings and rooms following the policies in place.

Parish House Guidelines

Here are guidelines for coming to the church office or attending a smaller group meeting in the Parish House:

  • Everyone in the Parish House working or interacting with staff is required to wear a mask at all times. Special accommodations are made for people with disabilities unable to wear a mask and children under 5.
  • Fully vaccinated members of specific church groups who have agreed 100% to do so, may choose to unmask and relax social distancing while they are in their meeting room and are required to mask up when leaving their meeting room.

These guidelines will be in place unless the COVID-19 situation requires a reassessment. Meanwhile, the Bridging Team (First U’s COVID-19 Task Force) will continue to meet, monitor the situation, and recommend any guidelines changes needed to the Prudential Committee, First U’s elected governing board.

Upcoming issues of the First U Times will contain further information. All music for the in-person Summer Services beginning August 8 will be instrumental rather than vocal. Until then, enjoy the popular Summer Series’ speakers and music on First U’s YouTube channel beginning at 10am on Sunday mornings.