The Outbreak Task Force (OFT) met on June 22nd to formalize Session’s request to end the OTF, and to discuss steps to wrap-up the group’s official work in providing discernment and guidance for St. Andrew pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic. The group was convened originally as a short-term committee in March 2020 in response to the growing concerns following King County and local school district concerns about large gatherings and the fast-growing body of international news of the pandemic. With local and national easing of COVID precautions, the OTF has served it’s purpose and is officially “sunsetting.”
While it is time to disband the OTF, contracting COVID still remains a possibility. To this end, you will still see the HEPA filters in the sanctuary and library used during gatherings, and the clipboard for sign-in will remain in the narthex for those attending worship. Contact your Deacon and the office if you test positive in the week following in-person participation at St. Andrew to allow notification of those in attendance. Masking will remain optional, we have returned to the pre-COVID ventilation procedures, and as always, we ask that if you are not feeling well because of virus or cold-like symptoms, please refrain from joining in person.
A huge thank you goes out to everyone in the congregation who responded quickly to the concerns, adapted and adhered to protocols, and gave us feedback along the way. The work behind the scenes to not miss providing a single worship service in the face of an abrupt facilities closure is truly outstanding and speaks to the love, faith, and determination of church leadership, volunteers, and the congregation. The work to get us back together in a reasonably safe manner and to address your concerns was also no small task.
Many, many people played a role in the OTF, and the following list is provided to highlight this fact, with sincere apologies in advance if any name has been accidentally omitted. Thank you to OTF co-chairs Andrea Shirey and Teresa Platin, committee members (both past and present) Scott Anderson, Dan Clawson, Laurie Rossnagel, Julie Kae Sigars, Amber Oaks, and advisors Melet Whinston, Don Patterson, Derona Uzzle, and Maggie Breen. Special thanks to the Golden Hammer and Saw Team for all of the work to implement mitigation measures within the facility. Another OTF nod goes to Chuck Sigars for the quick start-up of video worship services (and all the content contributors like the pastors, choir, musicians and weekly lectors) that helped us to protect each other and remain in communication, and later for the work of Richard Crummett and his livestreaming team of Joan Crummet, Roger Paulsen, and Jan Dittmar.
Moving forward, we ask that you share COVID concerns or questions with the Deacons. Thank you, all.