March 13, 2020

 

Dear St John Family,

 

As you may have heard, the Coronavirus has now reached Maryland. Like other faith communities in our country, we want you to know that your health and safety are our top priority. In compliance with the State of Maryland, for the remainder of the month, St John will hold all 3 Sunday services, but with limited capacity.  We will practice social distancing, meaning members will need to sit 6 feet apart, which will limit the number of people allowed in the sanctuary.

If you are not able to attend Sunday worship, all 3 services will be available via live streaming which you can access on our webpage at www.stjohnbaptistchurch.org.  Audio sermons are also available on the website.

Feel free to continue to support our ministry financially by using PushPay (text ‘sjbcgive’ to 77977).    If you are not able to give electronically, you can mail your check to the church. If you prefer to use an offering envelope, you may contact the church receptionist, Tia Johnson, at 410-992-6977 or by email, sjbc_churchadmin@stjohnbaptistchurch.org, and request offering envelopes to be mailed to you.  Remember to put your check and/or offering envelope inside a regular envelope addressed to the church, Attention Financial Secretary.

 

Please see the following steps that we plan to take to keep all who come into our church building safe.  The following precautions to ensure your continued good health and well-being include:

  • Our cleaning vendor will work to disinfect all common areas.
  • We will engage an environmental contractor to perform a deep clean of common areas and follow ongoing suggested best practices.
  • Greeters will use the heart sign to welcome you instead of a hug or hand shake before our Sunday services.
  • We will not hold hands for the altar/community prayer.
  • Adults, youth and children will greet Rev. Turner and all pastoral staff at the end of the Sunday service with an elbow bump.
  • All seniors, adults, youth and children with pre-existing health conditions should decide whether public worship or gatherings are safe for you.

At this time, our church will remain open and operating according to our normal schedule. As a reminder:

  • Avoid exposure to infected individuals.
  • Practice social distancing, avoid greetings such as hand shaking, hugging or kissing.
  • Wash hands frequently for a minimum of 20 seconds using soap and water or sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your cough and sneeze with tissue or sleeve, not your hands. Discard soiled tissues immediately following each use.
  • Stay home when you are sick. Monitor for fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Call your doctor immediately if you exhibit any of these symptoms.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces, tabletops, desktops, computer key boards, telephones, doorknobs or handles.
  • Stay informed- CDC is updating its website (www.cdc.gov/ncov) daily with the latest information and advice for the public.

 

Below is a list of reputable resources that provide information and guidance for parents and caregivers for talking with children about the Coronavirus:

https://childmind.org/article/talking-to-kids-about-the-coronavirus/

 

https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Talking-With-Children-Tips-for-Caregivers-Parents-and-Teachers-During-Infectious-Disease-Outbreaks/SMA14-4886

 

https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources-and-podcasts/school-climate-safety-and-crisis/health-crisis-resources/talking-to-children-about-covid-19-(coronavirus)-a-parent-resource

Thank you and do not hesitate to contact the church office should you need any additional information.  We will keep you informed of any updates as we receive them.  Please let us know how we can better serve you as we go through this global health pandemic.  Be Prayerful. Be Safe. Trust God and Stay Well.

 

Trusting God,

Rev. Robert Turner

Senior Pastor

 

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