Covenant UMC Family,

These are rapidly changing days we are facing. We will continue to face them together in deep consideration and love toward one another.

This week, the Washington state mask mandate will end. The CDC has also said that most vaccinated Americans can now safely go about most indoor activities without a mask. In response to these changes and with consideration of the rate of vaccination and boosters within our congregation, the Re-Opening Committee, the Church Council, and I would like to announce a slight change to our masking policy.

Masks will remain mandatory for our volunteers and staff on Sunday mornings. In addition, masks will remain mandatory in the church office. However, we are moving toward strongly encouraging masks for everyone else, rather than requiring them. We ask that each of you prayerfully consider the most vulnerable in our midst while making your decisions. Our other mitigation practices will remain in effect. We are making this transition trusting each of you to make decisions that are wise and faithful. We encourage everyone to remember our calling as Methodists—“Do no harm.”

In the coming days, we will continue to monitor the case numbers and any new variants. It should be noted that if we see any dramatic spikes or variants of concern, we may revert back to mandatory masking. We ask everyone to continue to practice flexibility with us. We are sailing uncharted waters together. While that may be scary, it also gives us a tremendous gift—we get to uncover what the Spirit is doing in new ways and new places. We get to follow the trail as it unfolds before us.

Let’s continue to be surprised by the work of God in our midst and in the world.

—Pastor Megan Madsen