After last week's service, we got some great feedback from folks who would like to begin attending Reach services but would like to continue to social distance for their own safety or the safety of their families. With that in mind, our leadership team met on Friday to plan out how best accommodate everyone, and today we met to set it up and do a bit of cleaning. If you'd like to see our setup, Pastor Dave shared some video in the Facebook Live video he posted a couple of hours ago, so go check it out on the Reach Facebook page if you haven't seen it yet.
We have a small building, so we tried everything we are able to do to accommodate everyone. We welcome any feedback on how we could possibly improve our setup for future services as there may be something we haven't thought of yet. :) Here is what we have planned out for this Sunday:
For folks practicing social distancing: 1. We are opening the doors on the north side of the building (on the right if you are facing the building) for a separate social distancing entrance. 2. We will have a masked greeter there to welcome and guide you, but they will keep back 6 feet. 3. We have a third of the seats in the sanctuary roped off and spaced at larger intervals so families can sit together but keep their distance from other families. 4. We have also roped off route to the bathroom in the kitchen area specifically for folks practicing social distancing. We are prepared to disinfect that restroom by a masked & gloved volunteer between uses as needed. 5. We will have printed bulletins set out if you would like to take one, but we will also have a digital (PDF) version available on our website and the Reach Fellowship Facebook group if you prefer to look at it on your phone/tablet.
We know that this setup limits the amount of space in the church dedicated to people practicing social distancing, but it was the best we could come up with for the time being. With the small size of our building and they way our entrance funnels groups, it is very difficult to come up with a plan to prevent groups of people getting close together when entering/exiting and socializing. Our hope is that social distancers and non-social distancers will be able to chat and catch up with each other across the aisle in the sanctuary.
We ask that those NOT practicing social distancing: 1. Please respect social distance outside the building for anyone coming and going. 2. Please use the front door to come and go. 3. Please keep a few feet back from the roped off area to keep distance from anyone passing by on the other side. 4. Please don't gather to socialize in the doorway of the sanctuary near the kitchen. Please use the lobby or sanctuary seating area for this. 5. Please feel free to greet and chat with the folks on the other side of the rope but respect their space. They need to social distance for the safety of themselves or loved ones, but they probably miss you as much as you miss them. Let them know that! :)
At our leadership meeting this week we also discussed changes and improvements we'd like to make to the church in the coming year, so keep an eye out for that!
The last think I'd like to mention is we are looking for more volunteers to help out around the church and with specific ministries. Please know, most of our volunteers job are not time- or labor-intensive and are usually quite fun! We typically schedule our volunteers on a rotation so you would be needed every week (unless you wanted to). Please consider ways you might be able to help out at Reach! Some examples are below - feel free to reply to this email or talk to one of the leaders mentioned below if you are interested. 1. Teaching Children's Church or working in the Nursery - Annie K. 2. Cleaning the church - Nicole S., Pastor Dave, or the Wests 3. Greeting/handing out bulletins before the service - Cindy D. or Sue K. 4. Making coffee/setting out snacks - Sue K. 5. Playing music/singing with a worship team - Cindy D. or Pastor Dave 6. Running the service slideshow - Nicole S. or Pastor Dave
Thank you reading through this very loooong post. If you made it this far, good job! :)
We love all of you and are blessed to have you as a part of the family at Reach. Have a wonderful Memorial weekend and we look forward to worshipping with you (in person or online) tomorrow!
Grace and peace! Nicole & the Lead Team @ Reach
March 19, 2020
Dear Reach Family, As most of you have probably heard, on Tuesday our governor signed an emergency order banning gatherings of 10 or more people for the duration of COVID-19’s impact on our state. We are praying that this situation will not last longer than a few weeks so that we can celebrate Easter as a body, things are very uncertain and constantly changing. We will continue to update you throughout this difficult time.
SUNDAY SERVICE Due to the emergency order, we not be holding public service on Sundays for the duration of the order. Instead, we will be having a “virtual” worship service featuring Pastor Dave over Facebook Live Sundays at 10:00 am. If you have a Facebook account, please feel free to log in to watch Dave’s message and prayer time. If you have prayer requests you would Dave to pray about in the service, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org or post them in the Reach Prayer Request message group prior to the service.
We also encourage you to “participate” in the service by commenting over the Facebook Live chat feature. If you miss the live broadcast, you can watch the video later on Facebook. We will also be recording Dave’s message as normal and will post it on our website, YouTube, and FB pages as well.
**GIVING** Most of you know that Reach has been experiencing financial challenges over the past year due to not bringing in enough in offerings to cover our monthly expenses. During the closure we will continue to have our normal monthly expenses, and the absence of weekly offerings is going to severely strain our finances and significantly deplete our savings. If that happens, there is a very real possibility that we could run out of operating funds in the next few months and either have to close or relocate.
With that consideration, it is imperative that our body continue to support the church despite us not being able to meet in person. We have several ways to give electronically that are very safe and easy to use, which are outlined at the bottom of this email. If you prefer to write a check, you may mail it to the church. If you can only give cash, please do not mail it. Please contact the Nicole or the church office and we can arrange a time to drop off/pick up your offering.
Please be in prayer for our church during this difficult time. As a church that seeks to reach out to the community, we continue to be unable to do that as much as we’d like to due to our financial constraints. If you have prayed about it and feel led to give more than you normally do, we would be enormously grateful for your generosity to help us continue to minister to our current church body and plan more ways to reach out to the community, which is especially needed in these dark and fearful times.
BIBLE STUDIES & DISCIPLESHIP We will continue to hold most of our bible studies, but with some changes as needed to avoid having a gathering of 10 or more people. Please see our details below for changes and cancellations for each group:
Tuesday U – The study will continue at the same day/time but will be held at the WWIB Studios instead of Goodwill in Lake Hallie. This will continue until Goodwill resumes their normal hours. Contact Nicole for more info.
Wednesday Torchlighters Kids Group – This group will continue to meet at the same day/time but will meet in the Kallenbach home instead of at the church. (1427 Nicholas Drive)
Wednesday Discipleship Class – This group will continue to meet at the church (same day/time), however in an effort to keep the in-house attendees under 10 people, we are asking folks who are able to join “virtually” to do so. We will be providing a Zoom meeting link for those people which will provide the ability to conference video and audio into the class. If you can join virtually, please let Nicole know so she can send you the link and instructions.
Friday Women’s Bible Study – this study has been canceled for the next couple weeks. We will send updates as to when it will resume.
Once the emergency order has lifted, we will resume our normal schedule and location for meetings. Please continue to engage with the classes in whatever way you can and don’t let fear prevent you from worshiping, studying, fellowshipping, and following God as He calls us to.
OTHER EVENTS The following Reach events have been canceled:
Women’s Brunch (Saturday 3/21)
Family Game Night (Friday 3/20)
Men’s Breakfast (Saturday 3/28
Family Movie Night (Sunday 3/29)
CONTACT INFO Please keep in contact with Reach leadership and each other during this difficult time. We are called to support, love and uplift one another. Below is contact info for the Reach Leadership Team, and Ellie will be sending out an updated Contact List for the full body soon.
Mailing Address: 1708 Westgate Road, Suite 101; Eau Claire, WI 54703
As a church of brothers and sisters in Christ, we pray that you will continue to share the love of Christ which is especially needed in these days of fear and darkness. Please pray for and support each other, as well as for the church, the community, friends and family, and the unsaved. Help each other and help those around you. Whether it’s offering to shop for an isolated neighbor, give toilet paper to a family who can’t find more, calling to check on a friend, or just praying – find ways to stay connected to your church and community and share the love Jesus and the Gospel of salvation.
May the Lord bless you and keep you, The Leadership of Reach Church