On-Site worship has resumed.

**Updated as of September 1, 2021.
Discovering the New Normal
   Returning to FCC’s pre-COVID format continues to be a challenge, as COVID-variants rise. The Delta variant has thrown a few monkey wrenches into our plans, but not enough to deter us. As many of you know firsthand, breakthrough infections for vaccinated individuals continue plus children under 12 remain unable to receive any vaccinations. Thankfully, these obstacles cannot thwart the faith, resolve, or adaptability of our church leaders. With the Holy Spirit’s guidance, they are adapting to these constantly changing times -- discovering the New Normal!
   As such, our leaders remain firmly committed to resuming FCC’s original Sunday format: 2 Services at 8:30 & 10:30, Sunday school at 9:30, and Fellowship groups in late afternoons & evenings – beginning Sunday, September 12. To do so safely, our original “return to church” plans required modifications.

Deacons & Communion --
   First, we will continue using and distributing the prepackaged communion packets and receive offerings as we have since Feb. 14 – for both services! While this won’t impact the 8:30 Service greatly, it will significantly alter all the planning that went into bringing back the Deacons for receiving offering and sharing communion. A “Big Thanks” goes to our former Deacon Chair, Amy LaHue, our new Deacon Chair, Debbie Potthast and all the Deacon Team Captains and Teams who worked so hard to be ready for Sept. 12! Thank you! Hopefully, we will reactivate our Deacons soon, so Deacons, please “stand by and ready” as we wait for the right conditions to return.

Masks --
   Second, we’ll have to return to wearing masks at church. I know! It’s not my favorite thing to do either, but Christ calls us to be compassionate to those who are vulnerable and so… here we go again. Thankfully, our children, teens, college students,
teachers, administrators and professors have returned to their classes at Columbia Public Schools, MACC, Columbia College and Mizzou and can lead us by example since all those institutions have also returned to wearing masks at their indoor campuses,
as well.

May God’s protection and care continue to bless First Christian Church. See you (masked) in church!

And, just in case you did not receive the email notice concerning masks, here it is again:

As COVID-19 active cases rise, including breakthrough infections of those vaccinated, FCC leadership remains committed to protecting our most vulnerable populations, especially our children under twelve. Therefore, the decision has been made to return to requiring masks to be worn at all indoor church events, including but not limited to: worship, Sunday school, Bible studies, meetings, fellowship groups, etc., effective this Sunday, Sep. 5. This decision will be reevaluated monthly. Your cooperation on this matter is greatly appreciated. May God continue to watch over the health and wellbeing of our congregation and community!            
Blessings, Dr. Brad


May 14, 2021.

Dear FCC Members & Friends,
In light of yesterday's CDC announcement that masks are no longer needed for FULLY vaccinated individuals, the Moderator, Vice-Moderator, Treasurer, Associate Minister, and Senior Minister agree that FCC's Social Distancing Protocols need to be REVISED. These REVISED protocols still place an emphasis on protecting children & youth who still cannot receive any vaccinations while at the same time allowing freedom for those who have been FULLY vaccinated.
Be advised: the Church will NOT verify who is or is not FULLY vaccinated.
As Christians, each of us is on the HONOR-SYSTEM to responsibly, truthfully self-manage whether one is FULLY vaccinated or not. Peoples' well-being are at stake and we follow the One who taught us to "love one another."
These Protocols are effective immediately for the next four weeks until Monday, June 7 or unless the CDC provides new information, at which time they will be re-evaluated.
FCC's REVISED New Social Distancing Protocols, effective immediately until June 7, are:
  • Masks must be worn by ALL individuals who are not FULLY Vaccinated (both shots plus the 2-week waiting-period.) FULLY vaccinated individuals need not wear a mask.
  • While the blue tape will be removed from pews, church members are requested to maintain 6' social distance from non-family children under 16.
  • Reservations will NO longer be required.
  • Bibles & Hymnals will be returned to the pews.
  • Communion and Offering distribution will continue from the Narthex.
Please be aware and sensitive that this a transition time. Each individual and families will be at different stages along the vaccination spectrum.
For example, my family is at differing stages:
  • Brad is fully vaccinated and therefore won't need to wear a mask on Sunday.
  • Trish & Luke are not yet fully vaccinated as they still have one more week to go following their second vaccine, so they will both wear masks.
  • Noah, who is 11 and not eligible to receive a vaccine, will wear a mask and needs to maintain 6' social distance from non-family members.
  • Annie will continue wearing her mask until she is fully vaccinated and currently is under quarantine as a close contact from school.
All this is said as a way of reminder, that it is important not to judge one another should some come to church masked or unmasked, recognizing that each of us is at differing stage along this long, circuitous road to recovery.

Some people may still choose to wear a mask even after being fully vaccinated.
So with love and empathy, let us be sensitive, attentive, and kind to one another in the name of Jesus Christ!
Blessings, Dr. Brad


Protocols as of February 2021:
On-site, in-person worship will include/require the following:
  • 9:30am in the Sanctuary
    • If possible, enter and exit through the bell tower’s Narthex door.  The elevator is available if needed from Yonker Fellowship Hall entrances.
  • Gathering music begins at 9:15am - NOTE: please do not wait until 9:28am to arrive as all are entering via the same process of check-in/communion pick-up etc.
  • Masks will be required at all times. Sanitizer and masks are available if needed.
  • Seating is throughout the Sanctuary in keeping with social-distancing – six feet apart in a pew, alternating middle and sides of pews.
  • For those 65+: please use caution and consult your healthcare providers before deciding if you can/should attend.
  • Nursery care is available, but please mention your need of this when you RSVP.
  • REGISTERING:  RSVP for the coming Sunday.  Contact the church office at  449.4265 or fcc@firstchristian.org or click the "RSVP" button below.
    • You will be asked to check-in upon arrival, confirming your RSVP or register at that moment (for contact-tracing purposes, if needed)
    • By registering, you confirm that all attendees of your "party":
- are fever-free
- are not experiencing COVID symptoms (fever, shortness of breath, new loss of taste/smell, etc.)
- have not been asked by health authorities to quarantine in the last 14 days
- are not positive for COVID or awaiting results of a COVID test.
  • A bulletin with scripture, words & hymns will be provided.
  • Individual communion will be provided.

Please note that Dr. Stagg and the Executive Officers will reassess whether or not in-person worship is safe to resume on a weekly-basis and will notify the congregation of any new decisions made.  Thank you.

For a more elaborate breakdown of what to expect from in-person worship, and the safety protocols in place, please view the video below. (Made July 2020)