IN-PERSON & ONLINE SERVICES
The following email was sent to the church on December 11, 2020
These recent weeks have seen a flurry of news regarding Covid including record surge, Stay at Home order, and court rulings. Please know that our church leaders continue to learn, talk and pray to know how to lead well. Here are two convictions that we continue to hold in the midst of the surge.
1. Lovingly Safe
We believe unequivocally that the Covid pandemic is real and destructive. Our conversations with those in the health care industry, at Living Hope and out, affirm that the recent surge in cases is something we need to take seriously to those at the church and those who are vulnerable near us. Our local hospitals are stretched in terms of ICU beds and staff to adequately care for those who are sick. Their message to us is to help them to help us.
Our default position has been and continues to be to follow the guidelines given to us by health care professionals. Yet, we believe that it is our responsibility to lead our church in a way that is lovingly safe that frequently go beyond the guidelines and occasionally challenges guidelines.
During this particular surge, we are doing exactly that by pausing in-person fellowship gatherings, small/cell groups meetings, and staff meetings until January 11, 2021. If a meeting must occur, they must be socially distanced, outdoor and masked the whole time. Also, we are not allowing food or hot beverages even if the meeting is essential, small and outdoors.
2. Spiritually Necessary
While we seek to be lovingly safe, we also recognize the biblical mandate and personal necessity to meet for corporate worship (Acts 2:46) and mutual encouragement (Hebrews 10:24-25). After all, it is not good for us to be in isolation (Genesis 2:18).
So as allowed by the State, but more importantly, with biblical conviction, we will continue to gather for weekly outdoor worship services & monthly prayer chapel. We will provide streaming, do ministry to the needy and volunteer for special projects.
A recent poll conducted by Gallup found that Americans’ Mental Health Ratings Sink to New Low, but that those who continue to attend weekly religious services is the only group doing better. We are grateful that we can provide lovingly safe worship in a facility that allow us to worship together that lovingly is safe (outdoor, socially distanced, masks, covered).
So, we encourage our people to not be in isolation but gather, whether in-person or online. As we have said from the beginning, we ask you to keep the Sabbath and connect with community (cell group).
I have been informed that some of our health care workers will begin getting vaccinated starting next week. We are grateful for the frontline workers and look forward to turning the corner on the pandemic. In the meantime, we will be praying for you. Please be safe.
Pastor Steve Chang
We are offering both in-person and online services every Sunday so that the church can worship God wherever we may be best comfortable during the COVID Pandemic.
Patio Outdoor Service
Our adult worship services are held in our Outdoor West Patio. This space is about 7,000 sq/feet (By way of comparison, an NBA basketball court is 4,700 sq/ft) and can accommodate 150-200 people social distanced depending on seating configuration. The Patio has been upgraded with a portable stage, modest sound system and large video wall to enhance our worship. The State guidance allows us to sing and worship freely in this space. We ask worshippers to sit with family members or those who are of the same social pod.
Sanctuary Indoor Video Venue
For those who desire to be in a climate-controlled space, we open up our Indoor Sanctuary to participate in the worship occuring in the Patio. We request that those who worship indoor refrain from singing.
* Please note that we may limit this option only to those who have a need if the County is in the Purple Tier.
Youth East Patio Outdoor Service
The youth students (6th-12th grade) worship in the Outdoor East Patio. This space is also about 7,000 sq/ft. We set up chairs all in singles to encourage social distancing among students. We have set up a portable stage, modest sound system and large TV. The students appreciate having their own space for worship. Immediately east of the East Patio is the East Parking area that we have enclosed with fencing and equipped with tents, tables and chairs. This allows for some safe socially distanced fellowship. Youth worship occurs on Sundays at 11:30 am.
Kids East Patio Outdoor Service
Starting Sunday, Feb. 7, all Kindergarten to 5th grade children are invited to our 9:30 am Outdoor In-Person Service at our East Patio or Online through our Livestream. We will provide In-Person Small Groups (right after the sermon) as well as Online Zoom Small Groups at 10:30 AM (Kindergarten Online Zoom will be right after praise as usual).
For those joining us outdoors, make sure to register via Eventbrite and wear a face mask upon arrival. Parents are asked to pick up their children at 10:30 am.
At the current time, we are not offering in-person programs for little kids (0-preschool). Parents are welcomed to bring their little kids to sit with them outdoor or indoor for service. We do offer online services for little kids.
We offer all of the services online as well.
- Adult services at 9:30 & 11:30
- Catapult youth at 11:30
- Kids (K-5th grade) at 9:30
- Little Kids (2-preschool) at 10:45
Take a look at our Living Hope ONLINE page for the links.
View previous services on our Living Hope Community Church YouTube Page.
What is expected of me when I come in?
- Wash/disinfect your hands upon entering
- Keep your face covering on
- Sit only with your own family or those whom you live with during worship
- Refrain from singing if worshipping indoors
- Keep social distance whenever possible
- Congregate only in the outdoor patio
- Leave premise within 30 minutes after completion of service
- If you find out within 14 days of visiting the church that you have tested positive for Covid-19, please contact the church immediately
What should I know before I come?
- REGISTER for the service on Eventbrite to limit the crowd and keep record for contact tracing.
- CONFIRM that you 1) do not have a temperature above 100.4 Fahrenheit, 2) are not showing new or unusual cough, shortness of breath, chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell, diarrhea, and 3) have not been openly exposed to someone with Covid-19 within the last 14 days.
What should I expect when I come on Sunday?
- ARRIVE EARLY so that you have time to check in.
- ENTER through the front or the East covered parking entrances.
- SANITIZE your hands with the touchless hand sanitizing kiosk.
- STAND in front of the temperature scanning kiosk to ensure that it is not higher than 100.4 degree Farenheit and please wear a MASK at all times.
- READ the requirements.
- FIND A SEAT in the Patio and sit in pods of 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5.
- AFTER SERVICE, you may fellowship briefly in the outdoors spaces with social distancing and masks on
Do I have to register to attend in-person?
You do not have to pre-register to attend any of our in-person services. You do, however, need to register once you arrive so that we can have your information for contact tracing purposes. We do ask people to register on eventbrite so that we can reduce bottleneck on Sunday mornings.
Will church meet outdoor in the case of inclement weather?
Both the Patio and the East Patio are covered and protected from rain. But in case of extreme weather (e.g. cold, driving rain, high wind), the kids and youth worship may be moved indoors (pending the state's current guidances).
Is the church following CDC and State Guidances?
Our elders and task force regularly study the guidances put out by the authorities and do our best to abide. These are some of the things we have done and are continuing to do:
- Study the recommendations by the CDC and the California Department of Public Health on how to safely open churches.
- Conduct a cleaning and disinfecting.
- Modify the space (e.g. sanctuary seats, floor markers, etc.) for social distancing
- Purchased equipment (thermal scanning kiosks, touchless hand sanitziers, etc.) to enable effecient and safe operations
- Created teams (e.g. production/streaming, welcoming safety, faciliies safety) to prepare for the transitional normal period
- Created policies, procedures, and contingency plans
Can youth groups, college, single adults, or cell groups meet?
At this present time, we are allowing the physical gathering at church for the purpose of worship, leadership, prayer/praise night, or volunteering. Social distancing, wearing of masks, and all safety protocols will be observed during their time on campus.
What should higher risk people do?
If you consider yourself “Higher Risk” for COVID-19, and would like to attend our service in-person please contact us so that we can make necessary accommodations. We would love to have you worship with us either online or in-person.
Are there any specific instructions for staff and volunteers?
- All staff and volunteers should be trained by their supervisors on check-in, proper protocols, and contingencies.
- If you are at the facilities during the week, please do a SELF CHECK-IN according to procedure.
- All meetings should be conducted virtually.
- You may store your drinks and food in the upstairs kitchen counter and refrigerators if serving on campus for an extended period of time. (Not allowed at this time.)
- You may provide individually packaged meals and bottled water for staff and volunteers during meetings. We discourage any kind of communal food. Please clean up after. (Not allowed at this time.)
- As a general guideline, meetings of more than 10 should not have food. Smaller meetings may have food but should minimize times with masks off. That may mean eating quickly (6-10 feet apart outside or open area) without conversation and then begin the meeting with masks on. (Not allowed at this time.)