COVID-19 UPDATE

as of November 8, 2021

As we prepare to meet together as the people of God, you may feel nervous about returning to in-person meetings. This is completely normal. 

  • Please read the following instructions carefully so that you can make a wise and informed decision about what is best for you and your family.
  • Please know that we have taken these measures to ensure everyone can participate safely and be prepared for attending our in-person meetings.

If you, or someone in your household, feels unwell or has COVID or cold/flu symptoms please DO NOT join us. Please stay home, get tested and join us online.

Sunday Services

Arriving:

  • Please plan to arrive 15 mins prior to the start time of your service.
  • Children and youth now start in the church building.

Check-in:

  • Everyone is required to check into St Thomas’ North Sydney using the Service NSW app
    • If you don’t have a smartphone you can sign a paper register.
    • The NSW Government has given special exemptions for unvaccinated people to attend religious services and as such we will not be checking vaccination records.
    • We understand that people have different responses to this. While the vast majority of our congregations are fully vaccinated, we do want to welcome all people to hear the gospel. There are strong views on either side of the vaccination debate and we want to encourage everyone to treat each other with grace and kindness.
  • The Welcome Team will also be checking everyone into our church database and printing name tags. 
    • We need to know how many people are in the building as density limits apply (1 person per 2m2).
    • If you are visiting and don’t want a name tag, feel free to just give your first name to the Welcome Desk so that we have a head count of visitors.
  • Everyone aged 12+ will need to wear a mask at all times when indoors.
    • Please bring your own mask.
    • If you forget we will have a few spare masks (please just ask the welcome team for one).

Seating:

  • You are free to sit wherever you like for the meeting however please keep a 1.5m distance between yourself and anyone not in your household.
  • The area immediately behind the sound desk (on the left as you enter) will be reserved for double vaccinated people only. Look for our signage as you enter.

During the service:

  • Fully vaccinated people are now able to sing with masks on.
  • If the Lord’s Supper is being celebrated you will be invited up the front to partake of the elements. Please keep your masks on and maintain a physical distance of 1.5m as much as you can while moving about the church.
  • We will have as many windows and doors kept open as possible for ventilation purposes.
  • There will no longer be any overflow as we can have up to 340 people in the church now.

Cleaning & ventilation:

  • Pews and seats will be wiped down after the 8am and 10am services in preparation for the service after them. Please follow instructions from the service leader on the day.
  • We will have fans on throughout the service to push air out of the church building. This is a requirement for us to be able to run our services.

Morning tea / supper:

  • Morning tea or supper will be served after each of our services.
  • If you are new, please join us after the service as we would love to meet you.
  • You don’t need to wear a mask while having morning tea or supper, but if you are indoors please keep a mask on before and after these times.

Online Services:

  • We will be continuing a high quality live stream of our 10am and 5pm services here. You can watch previous services on YouTube.
  • The 8am service will be available on Zoom for those who are unable to make it in person. It will start at 7:45am. Meeting ID: 882 9021 5079. Passcode: 8am.

Children & Youth

Children’s and youth ministries will take the following precautions:

  • All children’s and youth ministry leaders are fully vaccinated.
  • All children’s and youth ministry leaders (and children aged 12+) are required to wear masks while indoors.
  • All buildings are limited to one person per 2m2.
  • Fully vaccinated people are able to sing with masks on.
  • Physical distancing of 1.5m will be encouraged where possible.
  • Doors and windows will be opened to provide ventilation.
  • Attendance records will be kept to enable contact tracing if necessary.

Drop-Off

Children and Youth at Sunday Services:

  • Children and youth now join us in the church building for the start of the service.
  • It is very similar to pre-COVID: 
    • There will be a point towards the beginning of the service when the service leader will direct children to go to their ministries. 
    • At this point, children’s ministry Team Leaders will be near the bookstall to meet the children. 
    • Team Leaders will check off children on the roll and make sure they have a parent’s mobile number for contact tracing (if you are a parent, please make sure the Team Leader has your mobile number before leaving your child).
  • Due to vestry renovations (which are being renovated for parents with babies!), the 10am and 5pm creche will be in Parkview A. There will be a space for parents to sit and a video link for the church service.

JAFFA:

  • Many children from JAFFA come straight from school with the JAFFA leaders. But if you are bringing your child to JAFFA, please drop them off at the piazza.
  • Please make sure you register before bringing your child to JAFFA (for emergency contact information, but also for contact tracing if necessary).

Lights:

  • Parents can drop off and pick up Lights students at the piazza. 
  • Students check in using the NSW Health QR code (if they don’t have a phone, there is a paper form for them to fill in).

Pick-Up

  • Please pick up your child/ren from their ministry locations.
  • Except for Big Atoms at the 5pm service—who will be brought back to parents in the church building after the service.

If you have any further questions please don’t hesitate to contact the church office.