Updated September 13, 2022
Grace is currently worshiping Sunday mornings at 10:30 am in the sanctuary and online (Facebook/ YouTube). Masks are optional, but always welcome and encouraged to reduce individual risk. We ask that people choosing not to mask be respectful and aware of distance/contact when interacting with those continuing to wear masks. (Note that mask policy is subject to change; should the county return to the "medium" transmission level, masks would immediately be required again for worship).
Other Grace study, fellowship, and committee groups are ongoing. Some are meeting in person; some continue on Zoom. Most in person groups maintain an online option using our hybrid technology to allow in person participants to interact with online participants. Mask policies may vary. Please contact the pastors or leaders of specific groups if you have questions.
At its April Session meeting, the Grace Session unanimously voted in favor of a new approach to covid precautions at Grace.
As regards our corporate Sunday worship, we will follow CDC community risk levels to determine mask requirements. When Fairfax County's risk level is considered "Low" (or green) for 6 consecutive weeks, masks in worship will be optional. When Fairfax County's risk level is considered "Medium" (or yellow) or above, masks in worship will be required. (Masks are always welcome, and N95/KN-95 masks are encouraged for those who wish to protect themselves).
- You can find the current status of Fairfax County by checking here; you can see a historical or recent trend of the same metric here.
- The current community transmission level for Fairfax County is: LOW. Masks are optional but always welcome and encouraged in worship.
As regards activities beyond our corporate worship (e.g. education, fellowship, small groups, mission, and more), there is flexibility. Each ministry now has the flexibility to set its own policies with regards to masking, eating, and other precautions, provided their policies are approved by an advisory group consisting of Pastor Ben, Pastor Katie, the Clerk of Session, and any relevant elders or staff members. (e.g., a Fellowship policy could be changed with approval of both pastors, the clerk, and the fellowship elder).
- If you are a ministry leader, please consider the needs of your whole groups when requesting accommodations. If you are attending an event, please feel free to contact the church office or the ministry leader if you have questions about the policy for that event.
- You may expect to see gradual adjustments to various precautions and groups over the next few months.
You may be wondering why, with so few restrictions in other parts of your life, Grace continues to require masks during times of significant community transmission. We thank you for your patience on this matter. Throughout the pandemic, Grace has taken a cautious approach to covid, and it has served us well. The philosophy behind our cautious approach has to do with our commitment to err on the side of protection of and inclusivity towards our most vulnerable members: those at high risk of severe covid due to age, immunocompromised status, or preexisting conditions. We recognize that other parts of our society have moved on, and we believe the church has unique position as an intergenerational community and a community whose God has always had a heart for the most vulnerable.
We continue to pray for you all, as the challenges posed by covid-19 to families, individuals, and communities are many and are diverse, and we are still going to be grappling with the pandemic's impact for years to come. We invite you to contact us anytime, in the church office or by email, for ways this community can support you or answer your questions and concerns.
Pastor Ben and Pastor Katie