Updated: February 25, 2021
Your safety and the safety of those in our community are incredibly important. That’s why Kingswood Church has developed detailed protocols to allow a safe return to in-person activities as part of a phased approach. At the same time, we regretfully recognize that not everyone will feel comfortable on the church campus, so we have made significant investments in live-streaming capabilities so that whether you are at home or in our building, you can fully participate in the worship of God.
In addition to your physical safety, we also understand the mental health impacts of this pandemic. If you are struggling in any way, please contact our pastoral team, and we will help you in any way we can.
Our updated protocol uses a color-coded, risk-based approach using DeKalb County data from COVID Act Now:
If the risk level worsens, the heightened protocols take place immediately. When the risk level improves, less stringent protocols will be implemented after seven consecutive days at the lower risk level.
Critical or Extreme Risk
- Kingswood Church is closed for all activities.
- Services will be live-streamed only and are closed to members and visitors. Only invited volunteers in the worship service may attend, and only while practicing social distancing and mask wearing. Staff and participants must undergo temperature checks.
- Church-sponsored group meetings held outside the church are not allowed. (We also actively discourage group gatherings of church members that are not sponsored by the church.)
- Services will be live-streamed and are open to members and visitors at a reduced capacity — only 28 family units per service (with guests seated every third pew on an aisle in alternating fashion, with the last pew in the triad left completely empty for spacing). Services are limited to 45 minutes. No infant/childcare will be provided.
- Mask wearing, social distancing, and temperature checks are required.
- Groups may meet outdoors on church premises or at other outdoor venues by registration only, with capacity limits.
- Services will be live-streamed and are open to members and visitors — 44 family units per service (every other pew at alternating ends). Services are limited to 45 minutes. No infant/childcare will be provided.
- Mask wearing, social distancing, and temperature checks are required.
- Groups may meet outdoors, as long as social distancing and mask-wearing protocols are followed.
- Food is allowed at outdoor events, but it must be purchased and containerized by a food service establishment or served by an individual wearing appropriate personal protective equipment. Strict social distancing is required.
- Groups may meet indoors on church premises by registration only, during time ranges established by the Executive Council, and subject to the capacity limits of the specific room.
- With prior approval, groups utilizing the Community Life Center Gymnasium may serve food, subject to the same restrictions above. Masks must be worn before and after eating. No other indoor food service is permitted.
- Services will be live-streamed and are open to members and visitors. Capacity limits will be adjusted by Executive Council.
- Mask wearing is required.
- Groups may meet in indoor spaces, with masks required.
- At the discretion of Executive Council, Sunday School classes and other groups may meet at regular pre-COVID times, subject to procedural guidelines and other limitations.
- Outdoor and indoor food service is allowed, but food must be purchased and containerized by a food service establishment or served by an individual wearing appropriate personal protective equipment. Social distancing must be maintained during food service, and masks must be worn before and after eating in indoor spaces.
- The Executive Council may decide to once again offer infant and childcare during worship.
The Executive Council will monitor the latest official public health advisories and consult with the Health & Welfare Committee to revise our protocols in lower risk tiers as new guidance becomes available.
In addition to the protocols tied to the current risk level, we’ve implemented a number of general protocols. Here’s what you can expect when you visit Kingswood Church — expand each section to learn more:
Masks and Social Distancing Are Required
- Masks must be worn by all who enter who are three years of age and older. We encourage you to bring your own mask, but we will have masks available for those who do not have one.
- In our worship spaces and meeting rooms, we have determined the maximum seating capacity that allows for safe social distancing according to CDC guidelines and set capacity limits accordingly. For worship, advance reservations are required.
- At most risk levels, social distancing is required throughout the Kingswood Church campus. This applies to everyone except those within a family unit.
- Handshaking, hugging, and physical contact outside your family unit is not allowed.
When Entering the Building
- Prior to entering the building for worship, temperature checks are required for all attendees if the current risk level is Yellow or higher. If any member of a party has a temperature of 100.4° or higher, the entire party will not be allowed to enter.
- Greeters will check your reservation and direct you to one of the reserved seating areas.
- Several seats will be available for first-time visitors without a reservation.
In the Facility
- We have installed air purification systems in the sanctuary, narthex, and other areas of the church building.
- Hand sanitizing stations are available throughout the building, especially near entrances.
- All hymnbooks, pew Bibles, envelopes, pens, pencils, and extra chairs have been removed from the sanctuary. These may be restored when the risk level is Low (green).
- We have enhanced cleaning and disinfecting protocols in place.
- Worship services will be shortened to 45 minutes if the current risk level is Medium (yellow) or higher.
- Worship leaders and staff will wear masks and only remove them while speaking.
- Non-wind instrumental music is allowed during worship services. No vocalists.
- Vocal music and wind instruments may be pre-recorded in the sanctuary when other staff and participants are not present, following appropriate distancing and other safety protocols.
- Children will not come forward for the Moment for Children if the current risk level is Medium (yellow) or higher.
- We will not receive an offering when the current risk level is Medium (yellow) or higher. Offering baskets will be located at the sanctuary exits, and a QR code for online donations will appear on the worship bulletin.
- Regrettably, we will be unable to offer nursery or worship care services at this phase of our reopening. We also will not have activity bags available for children during the service If the current risk level is Yellow or higher.
Weddings and Funerals
- Funerals and memorial services for a member, an immediate family member of a member, or regular attending non-member may be held.
- At funerals, family members of the deceased will be allowed to attend at all times.
- At weddings, immediate family members of the bride and groom may attend.
- Attendance by individuals outside these groups will be in accordance with the risk-level guidelines above.
- If requested by the family, the service can be live-streamed.
After You Leave
- Please do not congregate in the area outside the sanctuary or under the portico at the entrance.
- If you test positive for COVID, please notify the church office at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling us at (770) 457-1317.
- We will notify members in attendance and — to the best of our ability — help to notify those that were sitting around you or whom you might have come into close contact with while preserving your confidentiality.
- We may close for a period of time if a positive case is reported. Adjustments to our schedule will be communicated via our web site, email, and social media. However, it is our intention to continue to live stream worship, even if members and visitors cannot attend worship in-person.
We understand that unfortunately, not everyone will feel comfortable returning to worship in person. Our church commits to collective prayer for the vulnerable in our community and everyone who has experienced the wide-ranging impacts of COVID-19. If there is any way we can support you, please contact the church office.
Worship will be different — in the ways described here and more — but the God we worship remains the same. For more information, we invite you to read our detailed Reopening Protocol.