RE-OPENING SOCIAL DISTANCING PROTOCOLS
1. Registration: During the week leading up to the in-person worship, we will ask worshippers who desire to be physically present in church to please register online or call in to the church office between the hours of 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and register for his or her seat(s) for the upcoming Sunday. The call-in option is available only to persons who have no internet access. When calling in to reserve a seat, each person will be asked for the number of persons in his or her party and for their names (and ages for person under the age of 12). This will help us to determine the number persons who will be allowed to sit on any given pew. Furthermore, the pews will be marked for individual persons to be seated and for families of two or more to be seated. Every person age two years and older must register and complete the COVID screening form in order to attend in-person Worship Service.
- Presently, only one worship service will be held each Sunday. This is in accordance with the need to sanitize the sanctuary following in-person worship.
Sunday School will continue virtually until further notice. If you’d like to join a class, send your request via email.
The Nursery will remain closed until further notice.
- Service Time: 10:15am (Tentatively)
2. Please note that every person who desires to attend in-person Sunday morning Worship must register. The only exceptions are for the following persons: Senior Pastor, Associate Ministers, Deacons, persons serving in the Music and Fine Arts ministry on that Sunday, persons serving in the Ushers ministry on that Sunday, persons serving in the Audio Visual ministry on that Sunday, persons serving in the Health ministry on that Sunday and persons serving in the Count Committee on that Sunday.
3. If a person has recovered from a documented COVID-19 infection and has not been symptom-free for 10 days prior to in-person worship, that person is asked to not attend worship service until they have been cleared by a licensed medical professional.
ENTERING THE CHURCH BUILDING
Each person over the age of two years must wear a mask upon entry to the building and must remain masked for the duration of time he or she is inside the facility.
ENTERING THE SANCTUARY
For these purposes, a family constitutes only those persons who live in the same household only.
A. The ushers will seat from the front to the back of the sanctuary. Everyone is asked to follow the ushers’ instructions for seating and to remain in the same seating spaces for the duration of the service.
B. Worshipers or family groups will be seated in every other row and must maintain a physical distance of at least three (3) feet from other worshipers or family groups.
C. Families of 3-4 persons will be seated on the end of a pew in every other row.
1. Seating & Masks: Seating will be done on a first-register/call, first-served basis.
Phase I: Once we have reached the capacity of 68 (every other pew) in the sanctuary, we will not be able to accommodate additional persons. Pre-registration is essential in order to stay within capacity, and only registered persons will be admitted.
2. Sanctuary Seating: Persons registered to be seated in the sanctuary are asked to enter and exit through the doors of the main sanctuary only. Social distancing will be practiced. Pews will be marked for non-use. To limit contact at the end of service, persons are asked to sit on the side of the sanctuary that corresponds to the lot where they park. Persons will exit through the doors on the side where they are seated; those seated on the Fourth Street side will be directed to the corresponding stairway or elevator; persons seated on the Fifth Street side will be directed to that exit.
3. Mask Wearing: All persons’ ages two and older must wear a mask at all times when in any part of the building and during Worship service. Mask wearing is mandatory. A disposable face mask will be provided for persons (adults and children) who do not have one. Masks must not be disposed of inside the church building. Waste cans are available outside the building at both exits.
4. Security Ministry: Persons who arrive after we have reached capacity, will be kindly informed by our Security or Ushers Ministry that our Sanctuary has reached capacity and that no additional persons can be admitted at this time. Therefore, if anyone has family, friends or co-workers who would like to attend, they are asked to inform them of our registration procedures, which are posted on our website, www.unitedmetropolitan.org. There is NO on-site registration. Since registration is absolutely required and walk-ins are prohibited, we hope to not have to turn anyone away.
5. Entrance and Seating: Each person must submit to the guidance and directions of our Ushers Ministry and be led to his or her designated seat. Once seated, each person must remain in the assigned seat until the worship service ends, unless you need to excused to use the restroom or for personal reasons. Attendees are strongly encouraged to take care of their personal needs prior to entering the sanctuary for Worship Service, as access to restrooms will be limited as well.
6. Restrooms: Restrooms will be made available, and custodian will clean, sanitize and disinfect the restrooms during and after service. Only two persons (except for a family group) at a time will be allowed in the restroom. The only restrooms available are those on the main floor and on the lower level; access to the third floor is prohibited.
7. Offering: Offering will be placed into the secured locked boxes located at the entrance to the Sanctuary. Persons who give during in-person worship are encouraged to have their offering envelopes prepared prior to entering the church. Offering envelopes will also be available at the entrance; they may be completed during service and placed in the box at the end of the service. Electronic giving (via the bank’s Bill Pay, text, or online) is strongly encouraged! Go to www.unitedmetropolitan.org and click on “Give” at the top of the Homepage. Offerings may also be mailed to the church at 450 Metropolitan Drive, Winston-Salem, NC 27101 (please do not mail cash).
8. Communion: On Communion Sunday, all worshipers will pick up their communion elements prior to entering the sanctuary. Each worshiper is asked to dispose of their used containers in the waste receptacles located at the exit doors.
9. Baptism: Private Baptism service will be held on a case-by-case basis. Strict safety protocols will be implemented.
10. Music and Fine Arts Ministry: Persons singing in the choir will be limited to no more than 7-9 persons for the purpose of social distancing and will be selected at the discretion of the Minister of Music & Fine Arts. Persons are asked to refrain from congregational singing so as to help prevent the spread of the virus. Only those persons who are a part of the singing groups will be permitted to sing with mask during this phase of in-person worship.
11. Transportation Ministry: Transportation will not be provided at this time. As soon as this changes, we will provide notification. Safety protocols will be implemented at all times.
12. At the Benediction: Once the closing prayer and benediction have been given, persons are to remain seated and until our Ushers Ministry begins the dismissal process. The congregation will be dismissed one pew at a time in accordance with the government mandate on social distancing.
13. Hugging & Hand Shaking: Our church family is asked to refrain from hugging, hand shaking, or standing within three-feet of others during worship. This helps respect everyone’s personal space and ensure a measure of safety until the virus has been eradicated and the social distancing ban has been lifted.
14. Visitors: We realize that we may receive visitors who will not have received this information; thus, we are asking members to please share this information freely with your family, relatives, friends, and co-workers. There is no on-site registration, and visitors will not be permitted to enter the sanctuary if they have not registered and/or if their registration has not been accepted.
15. Cleaning & Disinfection: Please know that for the safety of our church family, visitors and friends, the custodian will professionally disinfect and clean the Sanctuary and all restrooms on a weekly basis.
16. Hand sanitizing stations: Hand sanitizer receptacles are provided on the outside of both sanctuary doors as well as throughout the building. Worshipers are strongly encouraged to use them, especially if they have touched any surfaces or been in close contact with another person.
17. Microphones: The microphones will be cleaned and sanitized weekly. Only the preacher will use the pulpit. Other speaker(s) will use the podium. The microphones will be cleaned after each speaker finishes.
18. High Touch Areas: The entrance and exit doors will remain open to reduce unnecessary hard-surface touching by worshipers. Also, all doorknobs, handles, hand plates, light switches, and railings will be cleaned and sanitized on a regular basis to prevent the possible spread of infection.
19. Bibles and Hymnals: Bibles, fans, hymnals, and offering envelopes in the back of pews will be removed. Additionally, Visitor Packets will not be distributed.
20. Elevators and Stairways: No more than two persons (except family groups) are permitted in the elevator at one time. Members are asked to be patient during this time and help ensure appropriate distancing on the elevator and in the stairwell.
21. Water Fountains: Water fountains will not be accessible during in-person worship.
22. Funerals: No funerals will be held onsite at United Metropolitan. All funerals will be held at the designated location of the coordinating funeral home. Pastor Armstead and United Metropolitan will provide clergy services and musical accompaniment.