PUMC Approves Safety Procedures for In-Person Worship Services

Posted by on Oct 2, 2020 in Church Operations, EventReport | 0 comments

During its meeting on Monday September 28 2020, the church’s Administrative Council voted to approve a safety plan which will be followed when we phase in live (in-person) worship services.  The decision of when to begin any live services is yet to be made; it depends on the state of the virus.  Pastor Jim will make the decision.  Each in-person service will also require a full slate of volunteers to usher, direct parking, administer the sign-in forms, and other tasks.  A congregation won’t be permitted unless these volunteers are in place.

When this happens, safety will be of the utmost concern.  Many restrictions will be imposed to meet insurance/legal obligations and to minimize the danger of spreading the disease.  Here are some examples:

  • Attendance will be limited.  Those wanting to attend must call the church office to register in advance.
  • Masks and social distancing will be enforced.
  • Anyone entering the building must sign a Indemnity Release and a Health Acknowledgement Form.
  • Ushers will seat families in an ordered basis to maintain distancing.  Dismissal will also be directed, and worshipers must exit immediately without congregating afterwards.
  • There will be no singing, hugging, hand shaking, or other contact.

It must be stressed that this is NOT an announcement of the imminent resumption of in-person worship.  The Council’s vote only means that we have a plan in place to facilitate in-person worship when the decision to resume is made.


On Friday Oct. 2, the below letter was sent to the congregation:


Grace And Peace My Friends,

               This is to let you know that there is a light at the end of the Covid tunnel!  On Monday September 28, the Pitman United Methodist Church Council unanimously voted to approve a plan for “Covid Safety Procedures for Indoor Worship.”  This plan needs to be in place before we can resume any form of in-person worship services in our sanctuary.   Our Father’s House has also designed a plan, and they have  been working all summer to comply with state and local recommendations.  After reviewing their preparations, the Trustees voted to allow the limited opening of Our Father’s House starting on October 5.  Covid safety plans for outside groups have yet to be completed.

Based on the state of the pandemic, Pastor Jim will make the final determination as to when the first indoor in-person service will occur. Until that announcement is made, the worship service will remain by livestream only. Please check the PUMC website and Facebook page for updates on when the first indoor service will happen.  Be advised that our safety plan will impose unprecedented precautions to ensure everyone’s safety during in-person services.  Attendance will be limited, and reservations will be required.  Other “social distancing” precautions will be strictly enforced.  

For indoor in-person worship to happen safely for everyone, Ron Brown, the Head Usher, will need a team of volunteers.  If you are interested in serving as a volunteer, please contact Ron Brown or notify the Church Office.

As of this time, no other activities have been approved for inside the church building other than necessary public health activities such as blood drives for the Red Cross or the possibility of the church building being used as an emergency COVID testing or treatment center.  Other than OFH and limited staff activity, no meetings, PUMC activities, or outside activities are permitted at this time.

While the church doors have been closed, the Church has remained open throughout.  Bible studies, BLAST, UMW Circles, small groups, Sunday School, and PUMC committees have all met through Zoom, Facebook Live, or in-person at people’s homes practicing safe social distancing without missing a meeting.  If you have been having difficulty with Zoom, Kate Dilks-Bird and Brian Foley can help you.  If you have struggled with watching the service through livestream, Rob Brown can help.  Just contact the Church office, and Nancy will put you in touch. We will still be connected to you.

               I would like to thank everyone for their patience and their grace. 

               Please stay safe,


               ROBERT K. UYEHARA, JR., ESQ.

               CHAIR, Church Council












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