UPDATE. The Community Dinner for March 14th, the Sunday Breakfast between services and Coffee Hour are now cancelled for the foreseeable future.
The COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak has reached our neighborhood. As you have likely heard, a Washington County resident and employee of Forest Hills Elementary School in Lake Oswego is receiving treatment for the Coronavirus. There is no indication that anyone connected to St. Barnabas has been exposed to the virus, but caution is still the order of the day.
We will continue to offer office hours and worship services as normally scheduled. To ensure your safety, we will create a routine for regularly wiping down common surfaces with anti-bacterial wipes and will ensure there is an abundant supply of alcohol-based hand sanitizer available for the congregation. I also ask you to consider the following guidelines.
– If you are sick, please stay home — both to heal and to protect the most vulnerable from infection.
– Please refrain from intinction — the practice of dipping the bread/wafer in the chalice. Intinction is not a safer practice than sipping from the chalice (there is a risk that the bacteria on our hands may come in contact with the wine). We will forego our Lenten practice of using pottery chalices, as silver chalices do not harbor microbes.
– Our Eucharistic Ministers will be reminded to thoroughly wipe the inside and outside of the chalice rim, turning as they wipe, with a clean portion of the purificator.
– During worship services, if you are feeling even slightly unwell, you are encouraged to refrain from contact with the chalice.
– If you are at all concerned about your health, you are also welcome to refrain from contact with the chalice.
– Please remember: consuming only bread is full communion with the Body of Christ.
– At the peace, consider alternatives to handshaking or hugging. A nod, a wave, or touching our hands to our hearts are among the many ways we can acknowledge Christ in one another.
– All communion ministers will use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer before presiding at the altar, or administering communion.
– Please do not hesitate to contact any member of the St. Barnabas clergy if we can be of service to you.
Holy and gracious God, give us the strength to meet the health crisis looming around us. Enlighten researchers that they may discover the right vaccine against this disease. Guide the doctors, nurses and all medical technicians working with those who are infected to take correct actions for their care. Protect all medical staff and family or friends caring for those who are ill. Bring together the governments and governmental agencies around the world to work together to eradicate this health threat. All this we ask through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.