3/12/2020
Dear Beloveds,

All of you are so very much in my heart right now. Especially our elders and those at increased risk. None of us ever expected to be living in a time such as we are. Your staff and leadership have been following the Coronavirus situation and CDC recommendations closely and carefully. We have also been following the recommendations and practices of the UUA and other UU congregations carefully as well.

This week the UUA closed its headquarters and directed that all staff stop travel and work from home. Many UU congregations have begun to cancel all in person meetings and activities, including worship, as well.

As the virus continues to spread it is clear that it is a matter of time, if not already, that it is here in Racine.

In consultation the board and I have come to the decision that it is now time for us to make that decision as well and we will be cancelling ALL in person meetings, activities and events here at OBUUC. We are still working out the details of moving most of our activities online and creating ways we can stay connected. Your staff will be meeting (virtually) today to flesh those details out but wanted to give you all a heads up about where we are. So, please watch for further emails and communications about details.

We do this out of an abundance of care and deep love for all of you. We want you to be safe and healthy.

This is uncharted territory and we’ll figure it out together. If you have any questions or need any support, please contact us.

Blessings and so much love,

Rev. Marlene

———————-

As we are all carefully watching and monitoring news and recommendations in response to the Coronavirus virus epidemic, I want to say that you, and the safety of our congregation, is very much on my mind and heart. It is a concerning time, a time to be clear eyed and careful and yet not overreact. A time to care for each other in this beloved community.

The CDC issued recommendations for people over 60 and/ or with pre-existing health conditions. Their recommendation is that folks in this category stay home as much as possible, avoiding large gatherings including religious services. This is the first time they have specifically named religious gatherings.

While there are as yet no confirmed cases in Racine County, that I am aware of, there have been confirmed cases in WI and a number of suspected cases awaiting testing. It’s most likely a matter of time before there are cases here.

I want to encourage all of us, and especially our elders and those at increased risk, to weigh carefully whether to attend church or not. If you make the decision to not attend please reach out to me, to our staff, and to Good Shepherds. We will want to check in with you and can arrange to send you a recording of the service, or other things as needed. We are also working on plans to put some services up on our Facebook page or even hosting them on Zoom. Those plans are still in the works. We’re figuring this out as we go. We’ll continue to keep you posted. Watch your email and the Facebook group.

Last night we also began to see the cancellations of a number of large scale gatherings and conferences around the country. We will keep you updated if those begin to impact UU events scheduled for this spring.

Reverend Marlene