Message from Pastor Adam
Our reopening continues to be based upon the statistical data of COVID-19 cases present in Coconino County. The above chart gives us two vital points of measurement for safe reopening. First, it gives us the number of new cases that the county is seeing. Second, it present us with the infection rate (how quickly COVID is spreading in Coconino County). Below is how those metrics will inform our reopening. If you have any questions about the metrics, you can click directly on the above graph for much, much more information.
Phase 1 – New cases and infection rate remain at higher than “yellow” level. Online worship and Drive-Through Communion continues.
Phase 2 – Both new cases and infection rate fall to “yellow” levels and a two-week (14 day) period begins to ensure that they are remaining at safe levels. Online worship and Drive-Through Communion continues.
Phase 3 – The two-week (14 day) period at “yellow” levels concludes. In-person worship resumes based upon the “Modified In-Person Worship” document that can be found at this link. One worship service a week is streamed and saved for those who are unable to return. Outside and inside groups are considered on a case-by-case basis with an approved safety plan.
Phase 4 – When the infection rate fall to “green” levels and remains there for two weeks, in-person worship is further adapted to more normative worship practices. The building opens to outside and inside groups with continued cautions.
Returning to In-Person Worship – ELCA Guiding Document
This document was authored by our national church body and describes some “best practices” for reopening following the CDC/White House guidelines (see below). This guiding document is an essential part of our decision-making process, but does not define all our actions.
Reference Web Pages
CDC/White House Guidelines for Phased Reopening – https://www.whitehouse.gov/openingamerica/
The national website developed to inform reopening based upon COVID-19 statistics for an area. The ELCA and Shepherd of the Hills are basing our reopening plans upon this guidance.
Coconino County Public Health COVID-19 Data Page – https://www.coconino.az.gov/2376/Dashboard-Data
This website provides all of us the COVID-19 statistics for our county. This information informs our position in our phased reopening and helps us remain aware of the impact the virus is having around us.