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COVID-19 Response & Re-Opening

in Kindness

a letter from Pastor Chrissy

On January 1, 2020, we began our year of kindness. We named the campaign, “Kindness Starts Here,” and planned a 12-month lineup of different topics that would help us focus our kindness to specific areas of our lives. We knew we had much to learn about practicing kindness online, in our workplaces, and with our environment (just to name a few). What we did not know is that we would be learning what it means to practice kindness during a pandemic. There is still much to learn on this front but a few things are already clear: kindness sometimes looks like social distancing, mask wearing, and hand-washing.

In an abundance of kindness and care for one another, we decided to halt all in-person gatherings, beginning March 12, 2020. Since that time we have been renewed by deacon phone calls, Zoom / Webex gatherings, and worship via YouTube. We have also moved from worry about the church’s financial future to gratitude and joy as you have remained faithful in your giving to the church during this difficult time. Your gifts are more important than ever and they are helping us to re-imagine church for today’s realities and for the long-term future that we will share together. Thank you for stepping up and investing in that future!

While it can be exhausting at times, this phase of the journey is giving us the gifts of endurance and creativity. The Spirit is alive among us and is indeed doing a NEW thing! We have seen increased attendance in Sunday School classes that are able to meet digitally; and our number of views on YouTube consistently surpasses our attendance numbers for pre-COVID in-person worship gatherings. This is something to celebrate!

As our state moves into Phase 2 of re-opening, our church has some important decisions to make about how and when we will resume in- person gatherings. The staff and COVID-19 Think Tank have helped to advise this plan. The Diaconate and Leadership Council have finalized it; and now we offer to you our framework for Stage 1 of re-opening GBC’s physical campus. The plan is fluid and will adapt to updates regarding the spread of the virus. We will continue to heed advice from the CDC, as well as from local and state officials. A Stage 2 plan is currently being developed and we will share that with you as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience and flexibility during this unprecedented time!

They say, “We are all in this together!” I must admit, I give God great thanks that I am in this with each and every one of you!

Pastor Chrissy Tatum Williamson

GBC Re-Opening Stage 1

Greystone’s Stage 1 begins June 1, 2020. The situation will continue to be monitored and evaluated throughout the month.

Greystone’s plan to reopen is informed by the phases of North Carolina’s plan to re-open and by the CDC guidelines for faith communities.

It is important to note that Stage 1 of Greystone’s plan happens in Phase 2 of North Carolina’s plan.

The two plans (Greystone and North Carolina) are related, but they will not always move at the same pace because Greystone is working to deal specifically with our local context and address the needs of our faith community.