Covid-19 Protocols for NY, PA and MD

Below are links to the NY, PA, and MD, COVID-19 Health Department websites for use in your congregation’s ministry. 

Churches are not exempt from CDC, State, and Local government instructions.  It is their desire to keep us physically safe.

New York   Pennsylvania   Maryland

Re-Opening and General Resources

  • LCEF Resource to assist in the application process for PPP loan forgiveness. CLICK HERE
  • Questions to Ask Before Restarting On-Site Worship – CLICK HERE
  • Opening Up America Again CLICK HERE
  • White House National Faith Leaders Call On COVID Response – CLICK HERE
  • The Church of 2030 Looks Very Different…and That Future is Bright! – CLICK HERE
  • Sample Rules for Electronic Voting – CLICK HERE
  • Attendance Tracking Practices During COVID-19 Stay-At-Home Orders – CLICK HERE
  • Directives for the Resumption of Public Worship –CLICK HERE
  • NY Forward Business Re-opening Safety Plan Template – CLICK HERE
  • CDC’s Interim Guidance for Communities of Faith – CLICK HERE
  • CDC’s Reopening Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfecting Public Spaces, Workplaces, Businesses, Schools, and Homes – CLICK HERE
  • CDC’s About Cloth Face Coverings (Masks) – CLICK HERE
  • LCMS Welcome Back Media Kit for Congregational Use – CLICK HERE
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci: To keep churches safe, use masks, limit singing and waitto resume Communion – CLICK HERE
  • HVAC Information for Eastern District Congregations – ASHRAE Guidance – CLICK HERE
  • Church Facility Systems and Covid-19 PDF – CLICK HERE
  • Keeping Children and Teens Safe While Ministering Online – CLICK HERE

The Return of the Gathered Saints From Pandemic ExileAs we consider initial steps to God’s people once again gathering in our sanctuaries across the Eastern District after the “Stay Home, Stay Safe” due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Michigan District, LCMS offers some guidance through this blog post based upon learnings from Nehemiah’s return from the Babylonian Exile in order to rebuild the breached wall of Jerusalem. To think that we will simply be going back to business as usual is most likely very short-sighted. Society will have changed. Our people will be changed by their experience(s) and our manner of ministry will be changed: some good, and some difficult to understand at this time – CLICK HERE.

Before We Gather – Open communication about what to expect, and any changes you plan to implement will help alleviate fear and anxiety. Ask yourself what you’d want to know, if you were a greeter, staff member, elderly church member, etc. Then, develop answers. This article on communication by Brotherhood Mutual will help get you started. – CLICK HERE

Making Sure Your Virtual Church Meeting is Legally Valid –  for online webinar, CLICK HERE

       (Note: A PDF handout for this presentation is available on the same page as the webinar access)

Navigating the Next Steps with a Paycheck Protection Program Loan – CLICK HERE
How churches can prepare to apply for loan forgiveness.

Stewardship Resources

CARES Act and Families First Coronavirus Response Act information as provided by Concordia Plans Services and updated on a timely basisCLICK HERE

1) Bi-monthly offering packets are mailed to member homes, by our supplier This a great way to remind members that the church is still alive and going.

2) Approximately ten-fifteen members have monthly/weekly checks automatically drawn against their account, and mailed to the church.
3) On-line payments via easyTithe. So far thirty-one members have enrolled.
If there is a need, I will be happy to assist anyone  who would like all of the details regarding these tools. Have them call me, Ken Knoll, at 716-683-7242)or Karen Baglio at St. Luke.

FOLLOWING ARE SUGGESTIONS of potential electronic online giving providers for your congregation as submitted by your sister Eastern District congregations:

> Joyful Response from LCEF (using Vanco)
> Stewardship Technology
> Giving Fuel
> Vanco
> Thrivent Personal Donations
> LCMS Foundation Online Giving
> Thrivent Federal Credit Union
> Easy Tithe