Re-Gathering our Church In-Person
Last updated: 6 August 2020
Dear Family and Friends of International Church of Oahu,
We are praying that you are well and encourage you to keep loving God and loving people, even in the unprecedented circumstances that have been created by COVID-19.
Throughout this time, the pastors and deacons have been cooperating with and following the leadership of our local authorities regarding our in-person worship services. Out of respect for these God-ordained leaders and out of love for people, especially those in higher risk categories, we have kept our building closed for these months. Thank you for your patience and continued participation in our online services and groups!
Now, we are excited that the moratorium on church gatherings has been lifted and our church is almost ready to begin re-opening. Through prayer, research, much discussion, and YOUR INPUT (via the survey) we have arrived at the following Regathering Plan!
Phase 1 | Online Only
Through June 14
We continued to gather for a pre-recorded worship service online Sundays at 10:30 am at http://intchurch.live.
Phase 2 | Watch Party (We are here.)
Beginning June 21
We will open up the sanctuary Sunday at 10:30 for a “Watch Party” of the pre-recorded service. It will be the same content that everyone has access to via http://intchurch.live, with the added bonus that we can be in the same room together!
We encourage our kupuna (65+), immuno-compromised attenders, and their caregivers to continue joining us online.
Anyone who chooses to not yet return shall be met with grace and understanding, not shame or judgment.
Your health and safety are very important to us!
Therefore, we will be following these health precautions in this phase:
– Masks will be required for all attendees over 5 years old (so sing extra loud). Masks may be removed when you are seated and listening to the message
– Greeters will dispense hand sanitizer to each person entering and exiting
– Chairs and rows will be spaced out so households remain 6 feet apart
– No Keiki ministry. Families are welcome to sit and stay together.
– No Bibles, coffee, food, or drinks will be provided.
– No shaking hands, hugging (we know it’s hard!)
– Communion elements will be pre-packaged
If you or a family member are sick, please attend the service online.
Consider hosting your own watch party in your home! Perhaps your neighbor, friend, or Life Group member would join you for the worship service (obviously, taking some safety precautions).
Phase 3 | Live Services
Target Date: Late August /Early September
After we have a few weeks of Watch Parties under our belt, we hope to transition to Live Services on Sunday morning in the sanctuary.
It is likely that we will continue with social distancing measures in some form. We’ll be in communication about that when the time comes.
Phase 4 | Keiki Return
Target Date: Unknown
Obviously, we don’t know when things will feel “normal” on Sunday morning, but the return of Keiki Church and Early Childhood Ministry will go a long way to helping families feel settled.
We love our keiki and will continue to include a message for them each Sunday and resource parents to lead their children through Bible lessons.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is considered to be at-risk?
Based on what we currently know, those at high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19 are people over the age of 65 and anyone with underlying medical conditions, particularly if not well controlled, including:
People with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma.
People who have serious heart conditions.
People who are immuno-compromised.
People with severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 40 or higher).
People with chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis.
People with liver disease.
People with diabetes.
What if someone tests positive for Covid-19?
We will ask the person to stay home and seek medical care if needed. He or she should stay at home for at least seven days after symptoms started AND three days after symptoms are improved and fever resolves without the use of fever-reducing medications.
We will contact local health officials.
We will inform the congregation of what has transpired.
Any areas we determine the confirmed COVID-19 person visited will be sanitized. Further steps may be deemed necessary at that time.
What are you doing to prepare the facility for services?
At International we have consistently maintained a high standard of cleaning our campus. Some adjustments have been made in order to prevent illness from spreading in our common areas.
Every worker, staff member, and/or volunteer performing cleaning tasks will be required to wear a mask and gloves while working at all times. New gloves will
be put on after completing a restroom or area of the building.
Special attention is given to the sanctuary, door handles, and bathrooms.
A cleaning crew will be working hard before, during, and after the Sunday services on campus.
Share a Need
If you or someone you know has a need created by this virus, please let us know. Whether that is an at-risk individual needing help with errands or getting groceries, a family running out of food, or anything else, we want to help. While we can’t promise to be able to meet every need, we will do our best to serve our church family and community as we seek to do all the time.
If you would like to make yourself available for various service opportunities, please let us know! You can add your name to our database and we will keep you update with different opportunities to serve our community. This might be delivering groceries, packing food boxes, bringing food to the medical community, or any number of things.
If you are interested in being part of our Prayer Team, let us know. As we gather prayer requests, we want to disseminate them to church members who will boldly go before God’s throne and intercede on behalf of various needs.
If you have a prayer request that you want us to share with us, you can do that here.
If you haven’t already done so, we invite you to set up online giving so that we can be well-resourced as a church to meet the needs of our community as they arise. If you would like to give to help those in need, giving to our general fund helps.
You can also contribute to our Benevelonce Fund for church members in financial need.