Gathering safely with COVID

ORUCC has a diverse team focused on how we can safely be an active and faithful church during the COVID pandemic.

The COVID Response Team includes physicians, researchers, nurses, public health experts, and lawyers as well as pastors, moderators, and other lay members. To aid in church planning, this group meets at the request of the senior pastor to evaluate the current state of the pandemic, to look ahead a few months, and to help discern how to best put the recommendations into practice.

We are proud of how we have navigated the pandemic, always seeking to provide a virtual way to worship and to remain community at the times when we haven’t been able to gather in person.  As a community that seeks to protect the most vulnerable among us, we have been doing our best to shift and change with the tides of COVID. We now have the ease of live-streamed worship from the Worship Hall at 10 am, so you may choose to participate in worship either which can be viewed in person or from home.

We understand and affirm that many will want to worship remotely so we will continue to strive for an inclusive virtual experience.

If you are experiencing any symptoms or feeling under the weather, we kindly ask you to join us virtually. If you do test positive for COVID after being with us, please share this news with us as soon as you can.

Thank you for your cooperation and help as we aim to keep each other healthy and safe.

Cloth masks like these made by our youth can be worn over surgical masks

When you join us in person on Sunday mornings, we thank you for wearing a surgical mask (or KN95 or stronger). We provide these at the door for your convenience. Children over the age of 2 are also asked to mask. While public health recommendations continue to evolve, when people are wearing even non-fitted N95 masks, nobody is considered a “close contact” with others during worship. In line with Public Health recommendations, presenters and choir members are permitted to remove their masks.

For small groups that use the church outside of the worship service, they may continue to work with the pastors to make the best determination for their group.

In our deliberations, we value the advice offered by the Wisconsin Council of Churches. Their recommendations are developed in consultation with public health experts and provides faith-grounded guidance to churches like ours. We also carefully monitor public health statistics for Dane County, looking especially at the trends in new cases and the current occupancy of the county’s ICUs. Additionally, we rely on members of the COVID Response Team to bring their own “from the clinic” perspectives to our discussions.