Online Children’s Messages:
 
 
For online worship and past sermons, please click on Worship below:

I’m New

Welcome to Lancaster First United Methodist Church! Everyone is welcome through our doors and in our community. We hope you find your church family with us.
 

Worship Times

Celebration Worship – Sundays at 9 a.m.
Praise Worship – Sundays at 10:30 a.m.
The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6 p.m.
 

This Month’s

CIRCUIT RIDER

July/August 2020 CIRCUIT RIDER

Dear Friends: 
Just a quick email to let you know that our plan, barring any unforeseen circumstances, will be to offer in-person worship again at Lancaster First beginning June 7th. The staff at church have spent many weeks in prayerful discussion and in observing the COVID-19 situation in both the state and in our county. We have also looked at the practices of many of the churches in our community. We prayerfully believe this is the time we begin to “re-open” for worship.  
 
I wanted to let you know both our opening date and what worship will look like, at least for a while, as we work to ensure as much as possible everyone’s safety.
 
1. CLEANING BEFORE AND AFTER WORSHIP: We will have our maintenance staff thoroughly clean and disinfect the Sanctuary, bathrooms and “touchpoints” before worship and after worship is completely done for the day. In between the two worship services, we will have people disinfect the pews and doors, along with other touchpoints, before the second service will begin. 
2. WEARING MASKS/SEATING: We will strongly encourage, but not “require”, the use of face masks. If you plan to wear a mask but forget it as you come to church, we will have some disposable masks available at the doors to the sanctuary. We will have social distancing seating arranged. Many pews will be marked as you come in so that we can provide for that distancing around the sanctuary. We would also encourage you to only sit with family members as much as possible.   
 3. MONITORING YOUR OWN HEALTH: We will not be taking anyone’s temperature before you come to worship. However, we do ask that if you are not feeling well, (running a fever etc.) or suspect that you may have been in contact with someone that has been infected with the virus that you take care of yourself and your church family and stay home.   
4. GREETING EACH OTHER: We know you will want to greet and talk with church family you have not seen for a while. However, we ask that you not do that in the church building. After worship is done, we ask that you leave the building as soon as possible.  This will keep you safer and will help us as we clean the church or prepare for more worship. If you wish to talk with one another, please do it outside or in the parking lot. As you do so, please respect social distancing as much as possible.  
5. NURSERY & CHILDREN’S MINISTRIES: The Nursery and childcare will not be open or available at this time. Children’s Sunday school and children’s worship will be on break during the summer, as usual. 
6. COFFEE HOUR & REFRESHMENTS: We will not offer our normal coffee hour or refreshments for obvious reasons.  
7. WORSHIP ONLY: We will be opening just for worship and not additional Sunday programming, so that we can focus our disinfecting efforts accordingly. 
8. WORSHIP SERVICE: As far as the worship service itself, there will be a few changes. We will not have bulletins or offering plates, again to minimize contact. The worship service will be on the screen.  As we will have everything on the screen, we have removed Bibles and hymnals from the sanctuary for now.  Again, this will reduce contact and save us hours in cleaning.  We will not “pass the peace” by hugging or shaking hands. Hopefully, we will find creative ways to let everyone know how excited we are to see them.  We will have a children’s message in the second service but will not ask the children to come down front.  Worship will be shorter than normal, again to minimize contact and to facilitate thorough cleaning.  Clergy will not be wearing masks for the sermon; we want to make sure everyone can hear the message. Also, many have shared that being able to see expressions and the speaker’s mouth aids in their being able to understand what is being said. Thankfully, in our sanctuary we can stand away from everyone at a safe distance for everyone to feel comfortable. We will have music provided. Our plan is to have no responsive readings at this time. We will have one hymn, sung at the end of the service.  We spent a good amount of time researching this. Our feeling is that with social distancing, many choosing to wear masks, and immediately leaving the sanctuary after the song, the benefits of singing in worship outweigh the minimal risk. Obviously, we will not be greeting anyone after worship. If you need to share something with the church or to the staff, please call us on Monday or send an email at any time.  
 
We understand that there is not a perfect plan, and not everyone will be comfortable starting back. We will continue to offer online worship every week. We have had great response from this, and hope it will be a wonderful way for those who are not a part of our church to begin worshiping with us. If you wish to wait, aren’t comfortable, or have health issues that you feel might put you at risk, we encourage you to worship with us online. There is no “one size fits all” plan that works for every church in every situation. We feel this is our best plan and hope to improve it as time goes on.  
 
How can you help? Please keep us in your prayers as we take the reopening for in-person worship as seriously, if not more so, than the decisions not to meet.   Follow our rules as much as possible so that we can not only keep one another safe, but also begin to move back to our normal worship experiences.  If you would be interested in volunteering to help disinfect the sanctuary in between the two worship services, please contact Clarence McCoy at the church.  
 
May God’s blessings and peace be with you.
 
In Christ, Rev. Dr. Brian Jones <><
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Lancaster First UMC
163 E Wheeling St.
Lancaster, Ohio 43130
(740) 653-3330
Crossroads Ministry Center
2095 West Fair Ave.
Lancaster, Ohio 43130
(740) 653-3330

 

Our Business Hours are Monday thru Thursday, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Fridays, 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.