Dear Frontline Family,
BEGINNING SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 28TH, the Board of Frontline Bible Church has made the decision to allow attendees of our Sunday worship services the option of removing their face mask and/or face covering during our services while at their seats in the sections of the auditorium designated as mask optional seating areas. Masks/face coverings will continue to be required anytime a person leaves the mask optional seating area. The board, in cooperation with the Medical Advisory Team will continue to closely monitor the situation and will make adjustments to this policy as risk factors and conditions change. The board continues to recommend that persons who are able to wear their masks at all times do so as a best practice in preventing the spread of Covid-19.
This decision was made following much thought, prayer, and discussion. Our desire in making this decision is to continue to provide for the health and safety of our congregation, while allowing for a little more flexibility in how people choose to worship at Frontline. This is a return to a policy we had in place last fall which worked well in balancing the need to minimize risk of transmission of Covid-19 while allowing more options for those who wish to join their church family for in-person worship. As with any decision involving a diversity of viewpoints and opinions, we know there may be some who do not fully agree with this change in policy for various reasons. It is our hope and prayer that, whether you fully agree or not with this policy change, our church family comes together in love, unity, and care for one another.
There are a number of reasons we have decided to make this change at this time, but one of the primary reasons is that we need to create an environment that allows more options for our congregation to come together as a church family. One of the most devastating impacts of this pandemic, outside of the physical health impact, has been the isolation and lack of community people have experienced over the past twelve months. We believe Frontline needs to be a place where our church family comes together for worship, fellowship, and hearing the Word of God in an environment where people feel reasonably safe and also have some flexibility in how they choose to worship. Over the past several weeks we have taken steps that provide families with more opportunities to participate in our Sunday morning services by reopening the nursery and resuming Children’s Worship. We believe this is another step in providing more opportunity and flexibility in how people choose to participate in worship at Frontline.
As the rate of infection and percentage of positive cases increased dramatically last fall and our health care system began to be overwhelmed, Frontline took the proactive step of discontinuing in-person worship to do our part in not only slowing the spread of this virus among our own members, but to also help reduce the spread in our community. We have been monitoring these numbers over the past several months and with the significant decrease in both the number of cases and the overall positivity rate over the past weeks and months in Kent County and across the state we decided now was the right time to take a step toward allowing our members more options in how they choose to worship. We have no indication that having this policy in place at Frontline last fall led to the transmission of this disease. In addition, since we last provided this option in the fall, a vaccine has been introduced and many of those who are most vulnerable to this virus have received or will soon be getting the vaccine. As we have throughout the pandemic, we will continue to offer an online option for those who don’t feel comfortable participating in worship in-person due to their health concerns or other factors.
As we have learned throughout the past year, no policy is permanent and the situation remains fluid. The board will continue to closely monitor this situation and will continue to solicit input from medical professionals within our Frontline community. The long-range forecast from medical experts indicates that we will be dealing with this virus for the foreseeable future. With that in mind and for the sake of the spiritual, mental, and physical health of our Frontline family, it is our desire as your board to move safely and cautiously forward toward the “normal” resumption of our ministries at Frontline based on the information available to us.
Your patience and cooperation throughout the past year has been greatly appreciated. As your board we may not have always gotten everything exactly right in the many decisions we have made regarding the pandemic and you may not have personally agreed with every decision we have made. We appreciate the grace, humility, and trust you have afforded to us. As we move forward as a church family in building greater community and care for one another, may grace, humility, and trust in the Lord guide you as you interact with your church family. We love you and look forward to what God is going to do in the coming weeks, months, and years as together we strive to be the church Christ calls us to be. May God continue to bless and guide you all!
Chairman of the Board
Frontline Bible Church