Dear Members and Friends of IBCZ,
I want to give you an update regarding our worship services as it regards meeting together again for “in person” worship. The Elders and Deacons met this past Wednesday evening to discuss this, and then the Elders considered it again at our regular monthly meeting on Thursday.
It is a challenging decision to make because we are in something of an “in between” time regarding the Covid virus. If the infection numbers continued to be as high as they were several months ago, it would be clear we should not open the church for “in person” worship. On the other hand, if the numbers had gone down to what they were last summer, and if a higher percentage of people had received the vaccine, we could easily make the decision to open the church for people to come to worship.
But for now, we are in that “in between” stage where some believe it is okay to gather together for worship, and others think it is still too early to do that. The original decision by the Elders and Deacons on Wednesday was that we would open up in March for those who wanted to come, but for those who did not think they should attend yet we would still be offering the live streaming of the worship services.
However, as we received more feedback from people directly involved in the worship services (worship/music team and tech team members), we learned that some of them would not be able to continue their involvement if there were up to 50 people in attendance (the maximum according to current Swiss regulations). Because of their personal health concerns, or the fact that they do not work from home and so should a quarantine be necessary if a person attending worship turned out to have the virus it would cause real complications for them, or how this could affect their family members, it would not be wise for them to come and assist in worship with a large number of people there. The Elders totally understand this concern.
The bottom line is that in the current situation, we do not have enough human resources to manage “in person” worship on a weekly basis for an extended period of time. We want to open for people to attend the worship services only when we will be able to provide a full worship service, including worship music, with full tech support to broadcast and record the service on a weekly basis. It would not be good to have some Sundays when we can do that, but other Sundays when we cannot.
This being the case, we will continue to offer only online worship through March. We will then evaluate the situation once again. Certainly, if the current trend of a lower infection rate coupled with a higher number of people vaccinated continues, it should not be much longer before we can again gather together for worship. We will keep you informed.
Meanwhile, let’s continue to keep IBCZ in prayer, that we will experience the Lord’s grace and blessings both now and when we can again gather together.
Grace and peace,