Forest Lake Talks


May 19, 2021

At the Stated Session Meeting of May 16th the Session of FLPC had a long and thoughtful discussion about how to react to the rapidly changing evidence and practices in our community and nation.  As we had previously committed to follow national guidelines, last week’s drastic changes in the guidance from the Centers for Disease Control now mean that we must adjust.  Our concern, as always, is to act not only in ways that are convenient for us as individuals, but to act out of love for our neighbor.  We want to create a culture that encourages and supports individuals to ask for what they need to be safe, and that encourages us all to be limited in our own choices out of love for the other.  We will continue to monitor both the national guidance and our local infection rates, open to changing our course as safety and love require.  After much discussion, the Session unanimously approved the following guidance:

Contingent on the Forest Acres council rescinding the local mask ordinance and following current CDC guidelines, the Session no longer requires masks for those who have been fully vaccinated at FLPC events.

  • But continues to require masks for those who have not been fully vaccinated
  • Encouraging anyone who wishes to wear a mask to feel safe to do so.
  • And requiring parents to make decisions for their children who have not yet been fully vaccinated.

Session will continue to require that social distancing be maintained whenever possible.

On Tuesday, May 18th, FA City Council voted to remove the mandatory mask requirement for vaccinated individuals, and left implementation to local businesses.  This means that, if you are fully vaccinated (it has been two weeks since you completed your vaccinations) and you are not immune compromised, you no longer need to wear a mask at FLPC events unless you wish to do so.  Non-vaccinated individuals are still required to wear masks and we ask that parents make decisions about their unvaccinated children.  The Session chose to continue our practice of observing social distancing as we continue to live into yet a new normal.  Session also approved allowing singing in worship!  So, on Sunday, we will still ask worshippers to keep six feet between them and other individuals/groups, but masks are not required for the fully vaccinated and we can sing!  We will still use the self-contained communion elements for this Sunday’s Pentecost Communion celebration.  But this feels much closer to a more normal existence than anything in the last year and a half. As you go about your business, remember that Christians are guided by love, not by personal rights and privileges.  So please keep a humble heart, mindful of what others need to feel safe as we deal with such rapid change.

Let us then pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.  Romans 14:19

Take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak.    1 Corinthians 8:9

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