Gatherings at The Land

Dear Beloved Community,
Beginning Saturday July 4th, Worship at The Land will offer an in-person option for worship in addition to the continuation of the livestream on Facebook. Worship online and in-person will take place every Saturday at 10am.

While I am excited to gather together again for worship in-person, I am also carrying a sense of grief for all the things that will be different from how we have gathered in the past. Two of the biggest adjustments will include the absence of a shared meal after worship and the requirement that dogs be leashed while on the property. It will also be hard to resist hugging one another, shaking hands and sitting close together. We are social animals with established patterns and rituals that are difficult to put on pause!

This, however, is not a pause without a purpose. The guidelines outlined below for in-person participation are signs of love and support for each person in our community. It might not feel as rewarding as a hug, but following the guidelines below is our best chance at making sure that when the time comes to hug once more, everyone will be there to give and get hugs!

With Love and Anticipation,

Pastor Stephanie

Gathering in-person for worship will require the following from all onsite participants

Before you come you will need to:

  1. Complete the online waiver and liability form. You only need to complete this form once for 2020. Adults complete the form for themselves and for their children in the same form. Each adult must complete their own forms.
  2. It is strongly recommended that persons planning to come to The Land for in-person worship communicate their intention by registering in advance so that our hospitality team can plan and prepare appropriately.
  3. Make sure that you do not have any symptoms of COVID-19, that you are not running a fever and that you have not been knowingly exposed to someone with COVID-19 in the past two weeks.

Things to Bring to Worship:

  1. Bring your own blanket and/or lawn chairs. The CDC recommends creating a contact-less gathering and includes in this recommendation participants bringing their own chairs and blankets to limit areas of transmission.
  2. Your cellphone. We will not have printed bulletins so each household will need a cell phone to check-in to the service and to access the worship program. You may also want to bring other items to make your time at The Land more comfortable such as a water bottle, sunscreen and bug spray. If you are bringing your dog to The Land, please remember a leash (see number 5 in the next section).
  3. A mask for yourself and for each person in your household above the age of 4 years old. This mask must be covering your mouth and your nose.

Once you arrive you will need to:

  1. A hand washing station will be located next to the canopy sanctuary so that participants can wash their hands when they arrive and when they leave.
  2. Once you are seated and set up for Worship on The Land, you will need to check-in at thelandumc.org for contact tracing purposes. This check-in form can be easily located on the online program.
  3. Wear a mask at all times while on the property. If you do not have a mask, The Land has masks that will be provided to you. Children under the age of 4 years of age do not need to wear a mask.
  4. Maintain 6 feet distance between yourself and anyone not from your household. A host will greet you when you arrive to the canopy sanctuary and will provide you with an assigned placement to ‘set up camp’ for the service. These spots are measured to be 8 feet apart from every other spot.
  5. Dogs are welcome to return to worship in July with their families but will need to remain leashed while on the property. This will lower the risk of transmission through petting dogs (who can resist!?!) and will lower the probability of rattlesnake encounters.

Leadership at The Land: Doing Our Part

The Land programming team, property development team and Board of Directors have been working hard behind the scenes to ensure that when the time came to regather for worship we were ready to go. Here are some preparations and plans that are being done:

  1. Signage has been posted at the entrance of the property to remind people to wash their hands, wear a mask and physically-distance. Masks have been stocked so that participants who do not have a mask, can be given one and two hand washing stations have been set up.
  2. The picnic tables have been moved out from under the canopies and markers have been placed so that physically-distanced seating is clearly identifiable.
  3. A platform and sound system ensure that the preacher and musician remain 17 feet back from the congregation. Temperatures will be taken on all staff and volunteers to ensure that no one is working while symptomatic.
  4. Volunteers are being recruited and trained to greet worship participants and ensure that they have a mask to wear, wash their hands and find a seating place for the service.
  5. Sanitation procedures have been created which include cleaning the portable toilet before and after the service and locking it when no one is on the property.