How to do Celebrate Safely
While the Saskatchewan Health Authority guidelines clearly state that no food or drink can be served before, during or after a worship service, an exception has been made for rituals that include partaking in food and beverage – like Communion. You absolutely can celebrate communion as a community of faith, but before you do here are some options to consider:
If possible, the very best option is to celebrate communion via remote worship.
If you need/want to celebrate communion during in-person worship, here are some options to consider:
- If possible have congregational members bring their own elements. Only households can share elements together. Masks would only be moved for taking the bread and sipping the juice.
- Provide individually packaged wafer and juice combinations (available at most Church supply stores) and have people only move masks for partaking the elements. Members can receive their communion elements as they arrive at church from a designated server using tongs.
- Provide elements by serving to each person individually while seated in the pews. Have a minimal number of people serving the elements – wearing gloves and using tongs. Do not allow congregants to take elements from the plates themselves. You want to minimize the number of people handling the elements and the number of people moving around the space. Have only one person preparing the elements – cutting the bread, filling cups etc. Make sure used cups are not replaced on the same plate as unused cups.
- Provide the elements and have people move towards the servers from the pews. This is the least preferrable option as it means people are moving around and possibly not maintaining physical distancing. If this is the only option, have element servers gloved, masked and using tongs (for the bread). Also consider having a server who collects empty cups on a separate plate, several steps away from the element servers. Make sure there is a distance of 6 feet or more between the servers. Have markers on the floor to indicate waiting spaces, and only allow one pew at a time to line up. This will likely take more time during the service, but it ensures that all the safety protocols are followed.
For more information or if you have questions, contact Tricia Gerhard at email@example.com