PO Box 911090
Lexington KY 40591
Phone: (859) 299-6260

Delaying Phase III

posted on July 24

After continued prayer and consultation, the KYUMC Re-Entry Task Force understands that we continue to be in a time of active pandemic and our team does not believe we are ready to move forward with entry into Phase III at this time.

As our struggle with the Coronavirus continues into August, we do have cause to celebrate the great work and sacrifices that churches have been making over many months to keep our worshipping communities safe. At this time, we are seeing a flattening in the epidemic curve and this is due to your diligence in following federal, state, and church guidelines regarding COVID-19.  

If the pandemic curve continues to flatten, we anticipate that Kentucky Annual Conference churches will be able to enter into Phase III (Sustaining Safe Facilities and Health of Congregation Members) at the first of September. Between now and the first of September, your re-entry teams are invited to prepare by thinking creatively about how to reintroduce children and youth ministries, as well as other church ministries, in ways that continue to maintain safe and healthy environments for families and children in your church context. The Kentucky Annual Conference Re-Entry Team will also provide creative solutions that churches can utilize to introduce children, youth, and other ministries in a safe and sustainable way.

Having these plans in place prior to September 1st will enable your church to implement these ministries effectively when we enter Phase III.

As we enter into Phase III, it will also be important for each church re-entry team to carefully monitor the pandemic trends in your own county and act appropriately. If your county’s cases begin to trend upwards, your church’s re-entry team will need to respond accordingly. You can find more information about your county’s trends at this link. Each church re-entry team will need to be sensitive to the particular needs of their congregation and their pandemic context so that they might fashion a unique response for Phase III in their church.

Contextual concerns re-entry teams should continue to consider in their planning include but are not limited to:

  1. The size of the church’s facilities,
  2. The average age of the congregation members 
  3. Staffing resources 
  4. Financial resources 
  5. Safe volunteerism practices
  6. Congregational compliance with ministry guidelines.

The Conference Re-Entry team will continue to provide guidance and support for all churches throughout Phase III.

Finally, the governor’s request that churches not meet for two consecutive weeks has now passed. As your congregations begin to gather for in-person worship again, we encourage everyone to remain vigilant in practicing social distancing, wearing face coverings, washing hands, and sanitizing worship spaces well. To aid your church’s re-entry team, we are providing an infographic that your church can use to communicate safe ministry practices during Phase III. The infographic can be shared on your church website, social media, bulletins, and other print media.

May God bless each of you as we strive to grow closer to the heart of Jesus.

If there are questions concerning any of the guidelines put forth, please contact the conference re-entry team, re-entry@kyumc.org.

There are now additional Guidelines for Phase II from the Re-Entry Task Force.  You will find them on the Phase II web page.

You can find the guidelines on the Kentucky Conference website at:
Holy Communion Guidelines