Reopening Advisory Team Recommendation with Council Approval - Updated January 4, 2022

The Trinity Reopening team continues to meet regularly as we assess and respond to current pandemic conditions.  In our ongoing efforts to protect our staff, the congregation and community, we’ve made the very difficult decision to close the building once again to all but our staff and a limited worship team at this time. 

As you are likely aware, the Omicron variant is spreading more rapidly than we’ve seen before. We’re monitoring positivity rates via several sites:

https://covidactnow.org/us/massachusetts-ma/?s=27651652

https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-response-reporting#covid-19-interactive-data-dashboard-

https://www.wbur.org/news/2020/03/09/coronavirus-cases-massachusetts-map

The sites have varying metrics due to delays in reporting and numerous inputs.  We review positivity rates for the states of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, the town of Chelmsford and the surrounding towns and cities we draw our membership from.  Over the past several weeks, the numbers have been climbing rapidly.  Our original metric for re-evaluation was 10% positivity rate – as of this writing, it is hovering around 20%.  At the same time, demand for in-person worship has been greatly reduced  – indicating that many in our congregation have already decided it is best to worship from home.

Throughout our discussions, we’ve always been mindful of the connectedness folks feel when we worship together.  We never wanted to open the building only to have to close again; we simply did not anticipate the significant surge due to the Omicron strain.  Having the building open at this time is not compatible with our primary goal of keeping everyone safe.  Please know that this was not an easy decision and we realize this change is disappointing to many of us.  In addition to our indoor, in-person worship, many activities and groups were beginning to return to in-person gatherings at Trinity and we’ll need to suspend those activities.  A notification is going out to our community groups to advise them of these changes.

We will continue to monitor the metrics, however, at this time, we don’t expect the positivity rates will decline to acceptable rates before the end of January.  Once we see evidence of a sustained decline in the positivity trends (three weeks or more) – we will begin to plan for a return to in-person worship and gatherings in the building.

Here’s a recent helpful article that has some suggestions for being prepared and keeping safe:

https://www.facebook.com/robin.schoenthaler.5/posts/10159185640141785

Our livestream worship will continue on Sundays at 10am eastern.

Please feel free to reach out to any of our reopening team members with questions/comments:

 

Trinity’s Reopening Advisory Team

  • Tony Bogyo
  • Kate Conran
  • Roger Downer
  • Pauline Ray
  • Pastor Erica Kennedy

 

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