Lens of the Future 6-8-2021

The Lens of the Future Committee is continuing to monitor the incidence of COVID 19 infections in the community and the status indicators that were adopted by the Board. At this time, we are still at LEVEL 2 but the metrics are improving rapidly. If the present trends continue, it is likely that all of the indicators will be within the Level 3 thresholds in the next few days. The LENS committee will review the latest data again on Tuesday evening, and will recommend appropriate changes to the Board at that time.

The Board approved updated procedures last week, including revised requirements for church activities at Levels 2 and 3. The new requirements can be seen **here (include the full procedures plus Levels 2 and 3)**. These updates reflect the latest CDC guidelines and the continuing evolution of our understanding of how the virus is spread. The revisions include less emphasis on cleaning and disinfecting surfaces, along with relaxed requirements for outdoor gatherings, but with continued emphasis on precautions to prevent airborne transmission during indoor gatherings. Facial coverings are no longer required for outdoor gatherings unless there is extended close contact between participants. Facial coverings are still required for indoor events, unless all participants are fully vaccinated and have mutually agreed to be together without masks.

The committee is continuing to work on the requirements for indoor activities, and is likely to recommend additional revisions in the next few weeks.

At our current Level 2, groups of 20 or fewer people are allowed to meet outdoors, with 10 or fewer meeting indoors. Meetings in the church building are limited to using Griffin Hall, the gathering area or the auditorium. Groups meeting for food events are limited to outdoor locations with 10 or fewer people. Once we move to Level 3, groups of unlimited size will be allowed to meet outdoors, while up to 20 persons may meet for indoor events. Up to 50 people will be allowed to be in the church at any given time, with additional limitations on the number of people in each room. More details of the Level 3 policies will be provided next week.

We continue to encourage everyone who can to be vaccinated as soon as possible. As we expand our activities, we will expect each person to do their part to protect themselves and others by getting vaccinated, wearing a mask if not vaccinated, and taking other precautions as outlined in the procedures. We know that the entire congregation is eager to get back together again and the LENS committee is working hard to prepare for that time. We welcome thoughts and ideas from the congregation. Please feel free to contact anyone on the LENS committee with your questions and suggestions.