Our Coming Together Team has been hard at work determining best practices for keeping our beloved community safe and healthy as our nation navigates the Delta variant of COVID-19. Pierce County has now entered into the Very High risk category for COVID transmissions, and this past week the UUA released its updated guidance for gatherings given the delta variant. Please review that guidance here, because it’s a significant pillar of truth and equity for how all souls in our congregations may safely gather in-person again.
Given that Pierce County is currently at Very High risk for transmission (visit Covid Act Now Pierce County, WA), and given the UUA’s updated guidelines, the Coming Together Team is recommending that TUUC not hold indoor worship services or RE classes in September.
However, our team has established Outdoor Gathering Guidelines which do continue to fulfill today’s CDC, State, Pierce County, and UUA guidelines. Please review TUUC’s Outdoor Gathering Guidelines here.
Currently, TUUC’s primary in-person gathering each week is our Sunday Noon Social Hours at Wapato Park. These casual outdoor gatherings have been so meaningful for those of you who have attended! To further nurture this wonderful gathering energy, we’re planning to augment our Sunday social hours with some spiritually themed discussions led by Rev. Joe, as well as lighthearted fun together as a community. We also have new social and conversational group gatherings on Zoom. Check it all out in the Upcoming Events section of eNews and our website!
Beloveds, I know this may feel like discouraging news as we head into our traditional season of ingathering and kicking off a new church year together. The grief and anxiousness that rises within each of us as we watch transmission rates rise in our community is real, it is valid, and it challenges us to continue compassionately supporting one another. In my reflections on this today, it seems to me we are having to enter this new church year with a one-month-at-a-time approach for the time being. While we are not planning to gather indoors in September, the truth is we don’t yet know where transmission rates will be headed as October draws nearer — they could begin to fall, they could continue to rise.
Regardless, the Coming Together team remains agile and ready to continue work on TUUC’s indoor gatherings, which are more challenging because the church building suffers from an outdated and inadequate air circulation system that was not designed with COVID filtration in mind. For now, the building remains closed. However, we are working hard to get the building deep cleaned, repaired, organized, and ready for in-person gatherings, and to get the air circulation system assessed. We can always use more volunteers for this vital work! Please contact Sheila Whybrow (firstname.lastname@example.org) to lend a hand!
With faith and reverence,
for your Coming Together Team