In-Person Worship

Update 5/20/2022:  Reinstating facial masks starting Sunday, May 22nd
A message from Fr Michael

We will continue to require facial masks when indoors.  This decision was reached after a few cases developed in and around the Parish this past week.  In every case, the individuals were fully vaccinated and boosted.  Thankfully, no one was hospitalized.

Given that reported infection rates are a lagging indicator of the virus’s spread, we’ll take this a couple of weeks at a time. Everything else will remain open, including wine at Holy Communion.  We have every reason to believe that these restrictions will be short-lived.  It certainly helps now that the weather is improved and we have a better handle on the importance of good ventilation.

Thank you for all of the ways you continue to care for each other, look after yourselves, and tend to the health of our good parish.

Update 11/27/2021:  Beginning tomorrow and continuing every Sunday of Advent, we will create a wider zone of safety between members and guests who are fully vaccinated and those who are unvaccinated.  Upon arrival, the ushers will ask each attendee if they are fully vaccinated.  Fully vaccinated means that one has received the Johnson & Johnson single shot, or the Pfizer/Moderna 2-shot vaccination.  

A booster is not required to be considered fully vaccinated.   People who are vaccinated may sit anywhere in the Nave, and those who are unvaccinated will be seated in the Chapel.  


When it comes time to receive Holy Communion, Deacon Missy and I will proceed directly to the chapel and commune the unvaccinated people first and then return to the front to administer communion to the rest of the parish.

After worship, only those who have been vaccinated may attend coffee hour in Marsh Hall.  

A Pastoral Letter from the Rector
November 27th, 2021

Dear Holy People of God 

I hope you are enjoying the good company of family and friends this holiday weekend, and that your Thanksgiving Day was filled with a spirit of love and gratitude.  

I’m sending you this letter on the eve of the new liturgical year to share with you what our worship will look like in the coming weeks and at Christmas so that you and your families can make your own preparations. 
 
A new, albeit less dramatic wave of infection, is anticipated this holiday season.  This coupled with the threat of a new and virulent South African strain is cause for great concern. 

Beginning tomorrow, November 28th, and continuing every Sunday of Advent, we will create a wider zone of safety between members and guests who are fully vaccinated and those who are unvaccinated.  Upon arrival, the ushers will ask each attendee if they are fully vaccinated. Fully vaccinated means that one has received the Johnson and Johnson single shot, or the Pfizer/Moderna 2-shot vaccination.  A booster is not required to be considered fully vaccinated.   People who are vaccinated may sit anywhere in the Nave, and those who are unvaccinated will be seated in the Chapel.  

When it comes time to receive Holy Communion, Deacon Missy and I will proceed directly to the chapel and commune the unvaccinated people first and then return to the front to administer communion to the rest of the parish.

After worship, only those who have been vaccinated may attend coffee hour in Marsh Hall.  

The vestry and I are endeavoring to find a good way forward that balances our need for togetherness, worship, and the benefits of the sacrament, with protocols to manage responsibly the risk of infection.

Though there is much uncertainty about the future, you can be sure that we will continue to gather as God's people for worship and fellowship, singing and laughter, joy, and yes, tears for the rest of this year and next, until that great day when this deadly virus becomes extinguished. 

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In-Person Worship at Christmastide

So, the most important news to share concerning our celebration of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day is that worship times will closely hew to what Saint John's traditionally has done.  We will have two services of Holy Eucharist on Christmas Eve, and one on Christmas Day. The Christmas Eve service times will be 4 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Christmas Day will be celebrated at 10 a.m.  There are significant changes as it relates to the safety protocols for each service.  

Christmas Eve | 4 p.m.
(Reservations required. Vaccinated and unvaccinated adults and children may attend)

The 4 p.m. Christmas Eve mass does require reservations and will be oriented around those with extended family members and/or grandchildren visiting. The 4 p.m. service does not require that people in attendance are vaccinated, but we will establish safe distances between family groupings. That means that you are welcome to sit with your family members, but there will be at least one row of pews between your family and the next.

Though not aimed primarily toward children, the 4 p.m. service will preserve the tradition of the children bringing forward figures for the Christmas creche scene. At communion time, families will be invited to go up as family units, and we will keep distance between each of our family groups. There will be no social gathering after the service, and we will dismiss through the double-doors at the front of the nave. 

Christmas Eve | 8 p.m.
(Reservations required. Vaccination required) 
The 8 p.m service will also require reservations and it is open only to those who have been fully vaccinated. This will create a space where those who are most vulnerable can come and worship without risk of becoming sick. There will be light refreshments at the conclusion of this service. 

Christmas Day | 10 a.m.
(No reservation required )
Our 10 a.m. Holy Eucharist on Christmas Day will follow the model for Sundays.

Details about how to make reservations for the Christmas Eve services will be provided in the coming weeks.

Grace and peace and most grateful blessings,

Michael +

Dear People of Saint John's, 

I am overjoyed to report that beginning this Sunday May 23rd, in-person worship will resume!


Owing to this week's CDC report on the efficacy of the vaccines to not only protect against infection, but to also reduce the chances of viral transmission from persons fully vaccinated was a huge factor in this decision.   The latest research gives us sufficient confidence in our ability to return to in-person Sunday Worship.  We will also continue to YouTube stream and Zoom Sunday worship as we have the past 16 months.  Everyone worshipping in person will be required to wear a mask.  Read on for answers to some of the questions we thought you might have.


Grace, peace and joy!
Michael+


Q. Do I need to make a reservation?
A. No.  Just come. 


Q. Can members and my family and I come if we aren't yet vaccinated?
A.  Absolutely!   We know that children are not yet able to be vaccinated, and some adults are not yet vaccinated.  We're setting up each  side of the Sanctuary to ensure that those who are not yet vaccinated are spaced safely apart from each other and those who have been vaccinated.

Q.  Will I have to show proof of vaccination?
A.  No, we're trusting folks to be truthful. You will have to declare whether or not you are fully vaccinated so that we can seat you safely. (Fully vaccinated means that 14 days have elapsed since your second dose of Moderna or Pfizer's vaccine, or your single dose of Johnson & Johnson's vaccine. )

Q. If I'm vaccinated why do I have to wear a mask?
A.  Yes.  Facial masks must be  worn over the nose and mouth.  We are responsible for each other and each other's health and safety.  King County still has very high rates of infection, and children are not yet eligible to be vaccinated.   We're all going wear masks to ensure the highest standard of safety for all.    We're counting on each person to be responsible and follow these requirements.   If there is anyone who refuses to comply, Fr. Michael will stop worship until everyone is safe or will dismiss the congregation in the event that a safe environment can't be achieved.

Q. Will we be receiving Holy Communion?
A.  Yes.  For those of you who have not yet been vaccinated, we will administer Holy Communion to you first.  When you come to the Altar Rail you will find a small plastic covered container with a single communion wafer on a small table.  You will take one and return to your seat to consume the Sacrament.  You who have been vaccinated will receive a Communion wafer from Fr. Michael and Deacon Missy standing at the Altar Rail.  

Q.  Are their any requirements to attend.
A.  No.  You should determine your own threshold for taking risks with what remains to be a very dangerous virus. So, if you are immunocompromised you are urged to not attend, but you can come to church as you wish.  If you wake up feeling sick or have a fever, please stay home.

Q. How many services will be offered on Sundays?
A. One Sunday Liturgy of Holy Eucharist at 9:00 am.

Q. How will the air be circulated?
A.  Our HVAC system is the most effective way for us to maximize the exchange of filtered fresh air.  

Additional helpful information...

-  The sharing of the Peace will be exchanged by bowing to one another.

-  There will not be an in-person or Zoom coffee hour this Sunday. 


-  After the service, please continue any conversations outdoors with appropriate spacing and masks on.

If you have questions that we didn't address in this notice, please email them to us here or to Fr. Michael Ryan directly at anglican09@gmail.com.