COVID-19 Update

by Fiona Watts

The Official Board of West Vancouver Church United had a comprehensive discussion about COVID-19 at our March 10th meeting. There have been many questions raised, both from members of the church as well as those who use our building. Overall, we are following current guidelines offered by public health authorities while being thoughtful about the particularities of those who gather in our space as well as how they interact with one another.

At this point, Vancouver Coastal Health considers the risk of COVID-19 in our community to be low. This, of course, is a continually-evolving situation and we continue to monitor information as it is made available and will adapt with unfolding developments. Currently, we have made the following decisions:

  1. Keep our church facility open for the time being.
  2. Follow best practices, such as refraining from shaking hands and hugs as we greet one another. However, our ushers look forward to cheerfully welcoming you.
  3. Suspend our fellowship time before and after worship for the remainder of March.
  4. Cancel our March Community Lunch (scheduled for March 25th)
  5. Give authority to a small number of Officers of the Official Board to make quick decisions as the need may arise.
  6. Encourage people to take advantage of the livestream of our worship services from the comfort of their own homes if they are unable or uncomfortable attending worship in person. wvuc.bc.ca/live
  7. Postpone our Spring Flea Market (scheduled for May 2nd).  There will be more details to come on this as they become available. Donations will not be accepted for the time being. 

There will be many other situations and circumstances that present themselves in the coming days and weeks. Please be assured that we will continue to follow the advice and guidelines communicated by the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority, the Government of Canada, as well as The United Church of Canada, and that we have processes and people in place to make quick decisions if need be.

Having said all that, please:

  • if you are feeling unwell, stay at home
  • practice good hand hygiene
  • if you determine that you are vulnerable, stay at home
  • make use of the hand sanitizer options available throughout the building.

We know that social isolation is already an issue in our community. As we practice social distancing, let’s find creative ways to continue living that which is central to our faith, and safely bridge that relational gap. Let’s pay closer attention to our neighbours and look out for ways to offer assistance to those who are struggling. If you find yourself with more time at home either because you have had to self-isolate or because your regular activities have been cancelled, why not consider using some of that time to pick up the phone and call a friend or neighbour to check in and see how they’re doing. 

If you find yourself in a situation of self-isolation or quarantine, please let us know so we can be checking in with you and praying for you.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to be in touch.

Fiona Watts, Board Chairperson fwatts@wvuc.bc.ca
Rev. Philip Newman pnewman@wvuc.bc.ca
Rev. Simon LeSieur slesieur@wvuc.bc.ca

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