Updated 09-20-2020


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Please carefully read the guidelines and be prepared to follow them when you arrive for worship or activities throughout the week. We will be observing strict social distancing protocols and congregants will be required to wear a mask and pass through a brief screening process before entering the church facilities.

First Presbyterian Church COVID-19 Guidelines and Protocols 

Governing Principles

  1. Our first priority will be the safety and health of our congregation and staff.
  2. We will adhere to the federal, state, and city guidelines for opening up.
  3. We will continue to consult with city leaders, other churches, and medical professionals.
  4. We will stay informed on current trends of the COVID-19 virus.

What you need to know before attending Sunday Worship and Weekday Activities

  1. Live streaming of worship services will continue on Sunday mornings.
  2. Beginning September 6, Ignite worship will be held at 10:45am in Fellowship Hall. Traditional worship will be held at 11:00am in the Sanctuary. 
  3. Enter the church through one of two entrances: CLC Main entrance near Reception area and Choir Room entrance (when open).
  4. Each person will be screened, have a temperature check, and sign in with name, phone, and email.
  5. Social distancing and masks are required on church property in all public areas and in worship (children 5 and under are not required to wear masks). Please bring a face mask with you; if you are unable to do so, one will be provided at the screening station. Rooms for small group meetings have been set up for social distancing. When meeting in small groups please remain six feet apart. Small groups may use their own discretion in regard to wearing a mask during their meeting time. If you decide to remove your mask during a small group meeting, remember to put it back on before exiting your classroom.
  6. Please do not attend if you fall into one of these categories:
    a. Individuals with: chronic lung disease, moderate to severe asthma, serious heart conditions, immunocompromised including cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow or organ transplantation, immune deficiencies, poorly controlled HIV or AIDS, prolonged use of corticosteroids or other immune-weakening medications, severe obesity, diabetes, chronic kidney disease and undergoing dialysis, liver disease
    b. Those who are or have recently been sick
    d. Those who have recently traveled out of state
    e. Those who have any symptoms of COVID-19: fever, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, or new loss of taste or smell
  7. Social distancing protocols will be in place; your cooperation will be appreciated.
  8. The bathrooms on the main floor (near the main reception area and the Parlor) and those on the first floor (near the choir room and Fellowship Hall) will be open.
  9. The sextons are responsible for sanitizing the entrance doors and restrooms.
  10. Volunteers and staff wipe down and sanitize the Sanctuary and Fellowship Hall at the close of each service.

Preparing Facilities and Campus for Sunday Worship and Weekday Activities

  1. Our Sextons have completed a deep cleaning of our facilities.
  2. Hand wipes and sanitizers will be available in bathrooms, hallways, and entrances.
  3. A limited number of entrances are currently available: CLC Main entrance near Reception area, Choir Room entrance (when open), and Memorial Hall entrance (on Sundays only).
  4. All other entrances will be closed until further notice.
  5. A one-way system for moving through the campus is in place.
  6. Entrance doors and exit doors will be propped open at the appropriate times.

What to expect when you arrive

  1. Entrances will open 30 minutes prior to the beginning of each service/event.
  2. Health screening tables will be set up at each entrance.
  3. Be prepared to have your temperature checked and answer the following COVID-19 Screening Questions:
    a. What is your name?
    b. Have you had contact with individuals with known COVID-19 infection?
    c. Have you had fever or chills?
    d. Do you have a new cough or difficulty breathing?
    e. Have you recently traveled outside South Carolina?
  4. You will be asked to use hand sanitizer and wear a mask when you arrive.
  5. Signage will be placed throughout the facilities reminding people of social distancing and general hygiene.
  6. Tape will be placed at six-foot intervals at all queuing areas (hallways, entrances, etc.).

What to expect in our Worship Services

  1. Live streaming of services will continue each week.
  2. Sunday morning television broadcasts will continue at 10:30am on Fox Carolina.
  3. Ignite worship will be held at 10:45am in Fellowship Hall. Traditional Worship will be held at 11:00am in the Sanctuary.
  4. The worship services will not exceed 50 minutes. 
  5. Harper Chapel will be used for overflow.
  6. Beginning September 6, Fellowship Hall will be set up with six feet between rows. 
  7. Every other pew in the Sanctuary and Chapel is roped off.
  8. Upon entering the Sanctuary, you will be seated by an usher. This will enable us to sanitize each pew that has been occupied after the close of the service.
  9. Members of the same household can sit together; however, social distancing must be maintained with other congregants. 
  10. There will be a limited choir and orchestra during this transition period. Small musical ensembles may be used. 
  11. Offering plates will be placed at each entrance and exit in the Sanctuary, Chapel, and Fellowship Hall.
  12. Please place your offering in the plate as you enter or exit. Alternatively, you may give online. Visit the Give page for more details.
  13. Communion will not take place until further notice.
  14. No one-on-one prayer will take place after services.
  15. Pastors will be assigned to each worship space. 
  16. You will not be able to exit through the door you came in.
  17. Hymnbooks, Bibles, and other literature have been temporarily removed from racks in pews. 
  18. A medical professional will be available at each service.

Miscellaneous

  1. No food or coffee service will be available in public areas.
  2. The Vineyard bookstore will be open from 9:00am-12:30pm.
  3. Literature racks will be temporarily empty. 

Volunteer Base

  1. Numerous volunteers are required. All volunteers will be screened prior to active service.
  2. Elders and deacons who are not in the high-risk categories have been recruited and trained to serve as traffic monitors, sanitizers for wiping down of worship spaces and overflow areas, and screeners.
  3. We have identified and trained supervisors for:
    a. Screening stations and volunteer screening
    b. Sanitizers for worship spaces
    c. Traffic monitors
    d. Ushers