PLEASE NOTE: During the month of August 2020, Saint Matthew’s held several outdoor Sunday worship services. On August 30, Saint Matthew’s returned to offering limited in-person worship in the sanctuary. The information below is therefore no longer current, and is being archived in case we need to return to outdoor worship in the future. (Updated 8/29/2020)
There will be only one in-person worship service each Sunday at 8:00 a.m., and it will be held outside, weather permitting. The 9:30 a.m. service will be a livestream-only service.
You can register for outdoor worship services here: https://reopen.church/r/MZEUeRNk
The registration website has spaces to sign up for the current week as well as several upcoming weeks. We ask that you initially sign up for only one week to allow space for others to have the opportunity to worship in-person too. If spaces still remain at 3:00PM on the Saturday afternoon before, you are welcome to sign up for another Sunday.
Please contact the Parish office (215-646-4092 or email) if you registered to attend a service, but need to cancel that registration because you are unable to attend. Doing so will free-up space for others who are seeking the opportunity to worship in-person.
As you know, the primary goal is to return in the safest way possible. Therefore, only a single outdoor service will be offered each week for now, and the following guidelines must be followed:
- You must register to attend one of the outdoor services, and attendance will be limited to 25, which includes the worship leaders. The registration information also will be communicated in our weekly emails, as well as here on our website and Facebook.
- The staff or Vestry will contact congregants we believe are not connected with us online, so they also have an opportunity to attend if interested.
- All attendees must wear masks from the point at which they exit their vehicles. Please be sure your masks fully cover your nose and mouth.
- All attendees must bring their own chairs.
- The area near the rear entrance to the church will have ground markings indicating the general area for placement of your chairs. However it is your responsibility to sit and maintain a minimum 6’ distance from others at all times.
- There will be no social gathering before or after the service.
What you need to know about the service:
- Father Peter and other worship leaders will be on, or at the base of, the steps leading to the sanctuary from the rear parking lot. Members of the congregation will be seated in the area surrounding those steps, including the sidewalk, grass, and drive/parking lot.
- The outdoor service will be the Holy Eucharist, but communion will not be offered.
- There will be two musicians, a singer and a keyboard player positioned at the top of the steps and in the Narthex.
- Unfortunately, according to current guidelines the congregation is not permitted to sing during the service. However, humming the music or speaking the lyrics is certainly encouraged!
- There will be no physical contact when passing the peace.
- There will be a basket available for pledges or donations. The basket will NOT be passed during the offertory hymn. Please place any offertory in the basket prior to the start of the service, or at completion of the service to limit potential interaction with others.
- A service bulletin will be emailed in advance, and all are encouraged to print and bring their own. You may also view the bulletin on a mobile device. We will have some printed and available on site, however please take your used bulletins home with you.
- Attendance will be monitored via the registration system, and on site, in case contact tracing is required. As a result, it is greatly appreciated that you cancel your reservation if you find that you cannot attend.
Property logistics and safety:
- Worship attendees will be directed to the area of the rear parking lot they may use. The usual one-way drive to the rear lot may be blocked to accommodate seating for the service. The upper lot is available to all, but we encourage you not to walk through the church. Please walk around the outside of the building.
- Hand sanitizer, and sanitizing wipes will be available for your use.
- All participants must wear masks for the entire service. If you forget to bring yours, we will have some available for your use.
- The handicapped bathroom, as well as the office wing bathrooms, will be available on an as needed basis. Directions for disinfecting areas that you touch, as well as disinfecting wipes for this purpose, will be available in all bathrooms.
- The church building, including all bathrooms, is being cleaned and sanitized after each Sunday.
What if it rains?
If the service is going to be cancelled due to inclement weather, both this website and Facebook page will be updated with that decision by 6pm the Saturday evening prior to Sunday’s service.
If we have the cell phone numbers of the registered attendees of that service, we will also text those individuals. Please contact the Parish office (215-646-4092 or email) with your cell phone number, if we do not already have it.