June 18, 2020 Update
Holmeswood Baptist has created a staged plan to in-person gatherings at the church building. There are four stages of re-entry to in-person gatherings. 1) In-Person gatherings are suspended, 2) Office/Administrative work opens, 3) a. Limited corporate worship in the Sanctuary, 3b. Small ministry groups, and 4) Kansas City lifts restrictions. We are presently still in Stage 1 and are waiting for a minimum of a 3-week period of plateau or decline of newly diagnosed cases of COVID-19 in KC as reported by the Kansas City Health Department (https://www.kcmo.gov/city-hall/departments/health/coronavirus-covid-19/covid-19-totals).
The stages of re-entry are dependent upon the trends of newly diagnosed cases of COVID-19 within Kansas City as reported by the KC Health Department. This means that there is flexibility to move forward or backward to stages depending upon what is actually happening with COVID-19 in Kansas City. We are deeply listening to the voices found in science, medicine, and research to help guide the health and safety of Holmeswood.
If you have questions about the overall structure of re-entry, you can email your questions to HolmeswoodBaptistChurch@gmail.com or ask a member of the Re-Entry Team (Nancy Campbell, Lora Lau, Chris Veit, Jeanine Williamson, Laurel Cluthe, David McDaniel, and Allen York). We have also had conversations with Bible Fellowship Group leaders to help with communication.
We are embracing the mantra "for the time being" as we all find ourselves during this season of COVID-19.
We deeply miss seeing you. Yet, even in this time of physical distancing, we give great thanks that the resurrected Christ is still actively engaged in each of your lives and our world.
May 4, 2020 Update
As attention and conversations around COVID-19 are starting to shift regarding incremental re-entry to businesses and gatherings, at Holmeswood we are beginning to lay the foundation of what that might look like for us.
A high premium for us is the safety and health of the congregation. We will listen to health leaders, the epidemiological community, and city orders to guide our plans and will resist pressure from other voices to rush into physical gatherings. Holmeswood will create a methodical and intentional process and will have a phased timeline that makes sense for us. We will also continually monitor and evaluate the practices of interactions in the future and make adaptations as needed.
To be clear, we have no timeframe at this point for when small in-person gatherings will happen on the church property. One day it will come, but not yet.
Physical distancing continues to exemplify a way that we are loving each other and our neighbor at this time.
Because we know that gatherings at 97th and Holmes will look different in the future than what they did two months ago, we have formed a “Re-Entry Team” to think through and create plans and practices of what future gatherings may look like. This group is comprised of medical practitioners, administrative minds, people who can help bring voice to various pockets of the church, and the pastors.
Members of the Re-Entry Team are: Nancy Campbell (chaplain), Lora Lau (retired nurse and leader of the Faith Community Health Team), Dr. Chris Veit (pediatrician), Jeanine Williamson (administrator), Laurel Cluthe, Allen York, and David McDaniel. This team will also work alongside other experienced voices, both within the congregation and within the city, to help guide our plans and practices.
Until we are able to physically come together, in whatever form that is, we will continue to worship online on Sundays and throughout the week. We are still people of resurrection and God’s movement continues to guide our way as we embody and express the inclusive love of Christ.
My dear church, know that you are deeply loved and are not alone.
Pastor David McDaniel