COVID-19 Guidance

COVID-19 Guidance

As we assemble for worship, we want to share some thoughts with our East Side family and any possible visitors coming our way.

We must understand that everyone is not at the same place on this issue as we try to understand what has happened in our community related to this Covid-19 outbreak. 

We must be considerate of our brothers and sisters in Christ and their individual issues as they and their loved ones mentally process this situation. 

Let us all be patient and understanding as we assemble under these trying circumstances.

There are many opinions on the cause, the approach on how to best deal with the situation, etc.  The answers to these questions will come with time, and for some of the questions we may never have the answers. 

Please arrive 10-15 minutes early so we can all process in and get to our seats before our 10:30 start time. (See below for additional seating information.)

The elders are closely watching the trends of infection for Bradley County and Tennessee. 

All other East Side assemblies are suspended for now.  Step by step we will venture back into the realm of normal activity.  To our older members and/or visitors, those who have impaired immune systems or other underlying health conditions, we understand if you do not feel safe in assembling with the church at this time. 

Please use your best judgment as we move forward during this recovery phase. 

Remember, ultimately you alone are responsible for your health and you are assembling for worship knowing that you may become infected or seriously ill as a result of attending this assembly.

If anyone in your household has reason to believe they have been exposed directly or indirectly to the virus, is sick or has a fever, please keep your entire family/household at home.

Each and everyone of us must do our part to keep our brothers and sisters safe.  Please realize that if only ONE PERSON in our assembly is diagnosed with the Covid-19 virus, everyone attending that service will be quarantined for two weeks.  Many just cannot afford to be out of work for two weeks.  So, these guidelines are not just to keep YOU safe, they also protect your Christian brothers and sisters.    

Here are the guidelines that we request you follow as we assemble:

Use your hand sanitizer just before entering the building.     

Please maintain a minimum of six feet separation by household/family as you enter. 

We ask that everyone use the 4th Street entrance into the auditorium.  This will be for entry and exiting.  The exception will be in case of rain.

Please continue directly to your seat upon entering the building.

Should our attendance exceed the number that we can safely provide social distancing for in the auditorium, an overflow room will be provided in the Fellowship Hall. There will be audio and video feed from the auditorium. If you attend service in the overflow room, please access the building from the 4th Street entrance. If it becomes necessary to use the overflow, our ushers will help with directions.  

Every other row of seats will be left vacant.  Please sit with members of your household.  Therefore, teens and children must sit with members of their household/family.

We recommend that you wear a protective mask.  If you do not have one they will be available at the building.  Masks are not to protect you, they are to protect others from you.  Please know that we strongly believe that masks should be worn during our singing.

Please have no close personal contact with other families. We all miss our church family, but please refrain from shaking hands, hugging, etc. If you are visiting, please know that we are delighted to have you with us but unfortunately we will not be able to give you our “usual” loving handshake during this time.

The classrooms and hallways are off limits.  There are several projects underway in the building and these areas are cluttered and present trip/fall hazards.  Teachers, if you have a need to go to your classroom for any reason, please do so after the building has been cleared.

Water fountains will not be available. 

Bathroom access will be limited because of our attempt to maintain social distancing guidelines. 

There will not be a staffed nursery.

Communion sets will be placed in the pews or cup holders.  After service, please remove the empty cups and drop them in the trashcans at the exit. 

The bulletin will be placed in the pews.

Contributions -There will be a basket or plate at the exit.  You may drop your contribution there as you leave the building.  Or, you may choose to use our E-giving options including Venmo, Pay Pal, and bill pay through your bank.  If mailing your contribution, please use the address P.O. Box 1434, Cleveland, TN  37364-1434.  *Note that our post office box is much more secure than the mailbox at the building.

We will observe special procedures as we dismiss.  Our dismissal procedure will be much like those we have become familiar with at funerals in our area, row by row, starting from the back and working toward the front. 

Please do not gather in the foyer, aisles, or near the entrances as you leave.  If you wish to gather with friends or other families, please move outside away from the entrances, walkways, etc.

We will continue to review these guidelines in an attempt to make them as workable as possible. 

We look forward to the time when we can return to our normal worship schedule. 

Thank you for your cooperation during this trying time. 

We love you all,

The Elders