Worship Services Update

Dear FUUSN community,

What a long and challenging year it’s been! We appreciate all the work our staff and all of you have done to keep our community strong and together.

Over the summer, the Operations Council, Board of Trustees, and FUUSN staff have continued to monitor the progress of vaccinations and developments in the COVID-19 pandemic. While we are concerned about the Delta variant, we are encouraged by the high vaccination rates in Newton. After carefully reviewing the guidance provided by the Massachusetts Public Health Department, the CDC as well as our Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), we have determined that it is safe for us to gather together for worship services in the Sanctuary beginning in September.

Following CDC guidance that masks be worn by vaccinated and unvaccinated people indoors in regions with high or substantial risk (which includes all of Massachusetts), we will all wear masks when we gather indoors. The choir will sing from the chancel masked. This fall, the children’s religious education program will take place outdoors as much as possible and indoors in our larger spaces (not in smaller classrooms). Over the summer we have improved the ventilation systems in all our spaces adding Merv-13 filters and ultraviolet systems to kill airborne viruses, and increasing air exchanges so that our building meets the standards established for public school buildings (more on the details in an upcoming newsletter article). Unfortunately, for the foreseeable future, we will not gather for coffee hour in the Parish Hall. For those unable to join services in-person, we are developing a live-streaming option.

We will continue to closely monitor the pandemic in Massachusetts and modify our plans as circumstances dictate. Hopefully the overall situation will improve in the months ahead and we will be able to return to more of the activities that we so value.

We will provide additional details concerning our Sunday September 12tth opening service, plans for RE, as well as plans for the next several months in subsequent emails over the coming weeks.

We will send all updates via e-mail and Facebook. All information will be posted on FUUSN’s website: www.fusn.org.

Erin Splaine, Minister
Demie Stathoplos for the Board of Trustees
Susan Bartlett for the Operations Council