Holy Trinity-St. Nicholas - New Covid Protocols

GREEK ORTHODOX METROPOLIS OF DETROIT
COVD-19 Parish Procedures and Directives
Effective May 20, 2021


Due to the recent guidance offered by the CDC, the ensuing relaxation of restrictions in the states of the Metropolis of Detroit, and the recent guidelines from the Archdiocese (to the Direct Archdiocesan District), the Metropolis of Detroit will be following these new protocols beginning May 20th, 2021:

SECTION 1 – General Directives

A. Masks

  1. Those who are fully vaccinated may wear a face-covering and social distance but are no longer required to do so in churches.
  2. Those who have not been fully vaccinated are to continue wearing facecoverings and to practice social distancing to protect themselves and others in churches. Because a parish community – and our society – requires mutual trust and a commitment to the common good, each individual is asked to make the best decisions for himself as well as for others. Parishes do not have the responsibility to verify who is and who is not vaccinated.

B. Capacity

  1. For the protection of everyone, the parishes should remain seating people in every other pew until further notice. While in the aisles waiting for Holy Communion or antidoron, the people should remain socially distanced.

C. Sanitization

  1. Keep the sanitization stations in place.

D. Signage

  1. Signs should be posted stating “COVID PROTOCOLS”:
  2. If you are not fully vaccinated, you are to wear a mask.
  3. If you have any symptoms of illness, please do not enter.

SECTION 2 – DIVINE SERVICES

  1. The churches should offer masks at the entrance of the church to those who want/need one.
  2. Anyone who is currently experiencing any symptoms of illness must stay at home.
  3. Until further notice, icons should not be reverenced with a kiss.
  4. Bulletins may be left for parishioners to pick-up at a suitable place in the narthex or nave.
  5. There will be no choirs until further notice. We hope to have them back in the fall.
  6. Items to be distributed (Antidoron, Artous, Koliva) are to be prepared and individually bagged by one person wearing gloves and a mask. The priest may designate a person who is wearing gloves to distribute Koliva.
  7. Donations or stewardship should be received in a centralized location. Traditional trays/baskets should not be passed. Online giving options are encouraged and should be referenced where available.
  8. Outdoor fellowship hours are encouraged. You may offer indoor coffee hours following restaurant seating protocols. Coffee and food should be served by designated people wearing gloves (carafes already on the tables are acceptable).

SECTION 3 – MINISTRY RE-OPENING

Below are guidelines for the re-opening of certain ministerial activities. All activities must follow the general directives of Section 1 of this protocol.

  1. All ministries may resume. Fully vaccinated people are not required to wear masks. If you are not fully vaccinated, wear a mask.
  2. All reasonable efforts should be made to have a zoom option for meetings for participation of anyone not comfortable attending in-persons meetings.
  3. Hand-sanitizing stations must be in every room in which a gathering could take place, and everyone must use the sanitizer upon entrance to the room.
  4. Food and drinks are allowed, but they should be offered by designated people wearing gloves.
  5. If you are offering children’s ministries indoors already, nothing is to change as to how you currently offer them. If you have not started offering in-person youth events, please note the following:
  1. Church School and Greek School programs may resume in-person classes after having submitted a plan of procedures and receiving permission from the Metropolis. When preparing a plan of procedure to submit to the Metropolis assuring compliance with these directives, consider including the following:
  1. Procedures to avoid crowding, class starting and ending times, size of meeting spaces, layout of class space, etc.
  2. Limiting areas of possible virus transmission: shared supplies, etc.
  3. Ventilation: Doors/windows remaining open, etc