Dear Rock Hill Community Church,
With the recent changes to our state’s public health order, restrictions have eased enough to begin some movement forward toward public gathering. We are excited about what that means for our Rock Hill family. While we understand that gathering now has certain risks associated with it, we think they are outweighed by our concern for people’s mental, spiritual, and emotional health during this time of quarantine.
In light of this, we are preparing to reopen May 31st carefully and cautiously. We will responsibly operate within the parameters of the prevailing state public health order as well as COVID-19 safe practices.
The challenges associated with leading in any capacity during this season has been immense with so much of what we are allowed to do changing week-to-week. Our church leadership teams want to thank you very much for your prayers and support as we seek the Lord daily for clear vision and direction on how to advance God’s kingdom. We have been amazed at how gracious our interactions with you all have been, especially when the opinions of what to do and when to do it are so varied.
So, here is the current plan as we move forward:
- Rock Hill will be opening our Lincoln Park campus for our 10am service at 25 percent capacity (100 people per service with a small overflow room downstairs) this Sunday May 31st.
- We will continue to stream our service online at 10am as as many of you will not feel comfortable gathering for a while. (Streaming at Rockhillcc.org and Facebook Page)
- *We were planning on having a service at Chester Park this week, but Pastor Dean has a kidney stone so we will start RH Chester Park services next week.
*Depending upon interest level, comfort level, and ever changing gathering restrictions, we will most likely be adding services in the near future to better accommodate all those who wish to come. We want to gauge where things are at this week and then adjust accordingly.
The church is taking necessary steps to prepare for opening. For example:
- We are increasing our inventories of hand sanitizer, disinfectant, and cleaning supplies to make our campuses as safe as possible.
- We’re preparing for contactless services.
- There will not be RH Kid’s Ministry or nursery downstairs, but we will have some activity bags for kids during the service. Your kids will be expected to be with you during the service as it is almost impossible to keep kids playing together to stay at the required distance for public gatherings.
- We’re also looking into the possibility of adding services or possibly utilizing more outdoor services this summer to increase the number of people who can attend safely (Think utilizing our parking lot or a public park. (We are contacting the City to see if Lincoln Park might be an option)).
- As we gather, we do feel that it is important that we sing together. In light of this, we are going to ask those who are here to wear a mask. If you don’t have one, we will have some at the door for you. I know that mask wearing has been an issue of great controversy, but we are asking people to lay down their liberties and freedoms here in order to show love and deference to our brothers and sisters. Whether you agree with this or not, we ask you to consider having the attitude spoken about in Philippians 2:1-4. Our posture in these matters will display a profound perspective shaped by the gospel. The worship team and the pastors will be wearing masks as they interact, but will take them off on the stage so that you can see expressions.
Here are some important reminders:
- Small groups in homes are allowed, and we are still encouraging many of you to gather together in your homes to watch the livestream together. You may have to meet in multiple locations to keep the numbers under 10.
- We continue to encourage online meetings for City Groups and others who do not yet feel comfortable with in person gatherings.
- Social distancing guidelines are still in effect and expected to be followed at Lincoln and Chester Park in order to keep everyone as safe as possible.
While our gatherings will feel different for a while, we will be together, and through that will have a great opportunity to encourage one another. We will gather, we will sing, we will pray, and we will open up God’s Word together, and God will meet us! That is worth doing, even if it isn’t as elaborate.
Please continue to pray for our government leaders during this crisis as they carry unique burdens and require great wisdom for decision making. Please also pray for church leadership across our nation as they lead their congregations. Pray that God continues to redeem this crisis within Rock Hill and that we can be His city on a hill for one another and our community. We love you and we look forward to gathering in person as a family.
Your Rock Hill Leadership Team!