A Plan for a Safe Return

FPCE Goes Mask Optional Beginning March 13, 2022

To the Members and Friends of the First Presbyterian Church of Everett,

On Tuesday March 8, 2022, our Session voted to make masks optional during worship beginning Sunday March 13th. This change aligns us with the changing mask mandate by the state of Washington and comes as cases in our county decline.

We know the last two years have been hard and there are many challenges still to navigate. We value worshipping together, being a welcoming community, and using our sanctuary as a witness to Christ. We desire to love God with our entire being and our neighbor as ourselves.

Previously, our Session worked hard to adopt our Four Step Plan for reopening. We have used this plan with flexibility as we moved from suspending worship, to reservation and contact tracing policies, then worshipping with masks, and now to masks optional for in-person worship.

At this junction, we are moving beyond Step 4 to resume regular worship practices with attention to continued safety and flexibility. To do this, we will continue to offer masks and hand sanitizer, use individual prefilled kits for communion Sundays, maintain every other pew sitting, and encourage those who desire to wear a mask to wear one without judgement. We acknowledge we do not know the future but will be open and flexible to changes and adaptations if and as conditions change.

Beginning on Sunday March 13th, masks will also be optional for program activities in our facility. We encourage those who want to wear masks to continue to do so. We encourage those who are sick to remain home, rest, and get healthy. We welcome everyone to engage in fellowship, discipleship, mission, ministry, and volunteer roles as they are comfortable.

Our objective is to slowly resume program activities consistent with ensuring the safety of our members and friends. As we begin this new journey, we pray for health and a continued downtrend trend in cases of COVID-19 in our city, county, state, and country.

Here is a link to the recent Snohomish County COVID data: Local Case Counts | Snohomish Health District, WA (snohd.org)

Learn more about the CDC Tracking of COVID cases here: COVID-19 Community Levels | CDC

Check here for information on the changing Washington State requirements: Governors Newsom, Brown and Inslee Announce Updated Health Guidance | Governor Jay Inslee (wa.gov)