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The Senior Pastor’s Guide to Reopening

Church Fuel has provided a helpful and detailed guide to help churches plan how to reopen safely.  We wanted to share it with you in hopes that it is of help. Here are some of the highlights. (You can view it HERE .)

  1. Form a reopening task force that will work together to make the important decisions and to implement them.
  2. Set a date for reopening. Remember, you don’t have to be the first!  Follow Virginia state guidelines and your best judgement as well.
  3. Outline phases for reopening. Church Fuel provides some good examples of reopening phases which you can adapt to your congregation and facility needs.
  4. Survey your congregation. You’ll want to know how many are ready and willing to return to gathering together and what their concerns are. Find out who is willing to bring their children, or not. Will you have a large number who want to continue joining virtually on Sundays?
  5. Communicate your decision to the public.  Post you clearly outlined plans on your website, on social media, and in a church-wide email. Consider a video to post. Communication is important even if you don’t have all of your plans set or a firm reopening date yet.  Let people know you are planning though!
  6. The guide also gives you some great ideas to prepare your facility as you reopen.  From signs, to sanitation, to a checklist for the cleaning team, they cover all the things you will need to think through before Opening Sunday.
  7. Church Fuel also helps you think through how to move forward with blended services, that is having a live service that is also broadcast or recorded for those who prefer to continue meeting virtually.

We all are looking forward to meeting together again with our respective fellowships of believers.  Reopening will be a harder decision than closing and should be done prayerfully and thoughtfully. In whatever way we meet as a body, we know that the Body of Christ is not defined by the walls of a building but by Christ in us wherever we are! 

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