Thank you to everyone who participated in our latest online poll as we look toward planning our future services as our state and city begin to reopen.
We received 50 responses through May 19. Here are some high points:
- 90% of respondents found the 9 am online livestream Sunday service time to have been convenient, and 66% say that that time would work for an in-person service. From the comments, we understand that early in-person start times are much more difficult for parishioners who don’t live nearby.
- Respondents split on whether to begin with one Sunday service or two, with a small majority favoring two services.
- 60% of respondents favor resuming our former Sunday service times. 22% prefer earlier start times, and 8% preferred times other than listed. 55% of those with children who responded preferred the earlier start times, with a majority of those preferring 7:30 and 10 am.
- 60% of people would consider a post-service Christian Education time.
We received many thoughtful and insightful comments in the survey and are considering them carefully. Many people remain cautious about potential exposure to the virus; some won’t attend in-person services unless masks are required; others won’t attend while masks are required. Many people have enjoyed having the services live streamed online, and we intend to continue live streaming permanently. Most likely, we would stream only the main service on Sunday. We also plan to continue the informal online daily morning and evening prayers.
While the governor of Texas has approved the resumption of church services, we must have the collective approval of the rector, vestry, and regional Bishop, Hector Monterroso. David Browder, our Rector, and the church staff have been working on a thorough, workable plan that takes into account parishioner safety and worship experience. We will share this plan with Bishop Monterroso, take his input into account, and create a final plan. Already we have seen churches in Houston and Atlanta open and subsequently see Covid-19 infections in their congregations. We are going to do all we can to make sure that does not happen at Saint Thomas’.
In the meantime, please let David know about your ideas, thoughts and concerns (email firstname.lastname@example.org) and let us know how we can serve you.