Resources for Post-COVID Meetings for Worship
These are the objectives that FMSA adopted at its May business meeting.
We hope to attain as many of them as possible.
Please read the following documents before the
Called Meeting for Business on July 18th
to discuss proposals for reopening
- Report of the Ad-Hoc Committee on Reopening (approved by Ministry and Oversight on July 7, 2021)
- Results of the Survey of FMSA Members & Attenders
You are also welcome to view our survey form: Survey Form (PDF)
January 9th Called Meeting for Business
To consider approving a bid to install audio-visual equipment in the Meeting Room for Assisted Listening and for Zoom.
Background: At the July 18, 2021, Called Meeting for Business, Friends approved a plan for restarting Meetings for Worship in the Meeting Room. That plan accommodated two groups of Friends: those who needed to attend on Zoom for reasons of health or distance, and those who felt that the presence of Zoom technology would hinder their ability to worship.
FMSA approved Choice #1 outlined in the first of these documents. It called for two Sunday Meetings for Worship. The 8:30-9:30am Meeting would accommodate those who desire no technology in Worship. The 10-11am Meeting would be a blended Worship that could be attended either in person or on Zoom. Post-Worship activities (Forums and Meetings for Business) would be blended.
FMSA later approved installing ethernet outlets in the Meeting Room and getting bids to install an audio system that would help Friends in the Meeting Room hear better. The hope was that this assisted listening system would also potentially integrate with the Zoom.
It took several months, but we now have that bid in hand. It consists of 1) a centrally located direction ceiling microphone to pick up Friends’ voices, 2) a bluetooth wireless system that would deliver sound to Friends through either headsets, their hearing aids, or phone apps and earbuds, 3) two pendant speakers so that Friends in the Meeting Room could hear Zoom participants, 4) an installed video camera to replace the current (privately loaned) camera that must be set up and taken down for each use; and 5) the cabling, wiring, and router to make this system work.
We received this bid on December 17th and have 30 days from that date to accept it. The December 19th Meeting for Business decided to hold a special Called Meeting for Business at the rise of Meeting on January 9th. The sole item of business is whether FMSA should accept the bid.
Friends are encouraged to read the following two documents before this meeting:
Please click these links to review the materials before the Called Business Meeting. Please direct your questions about the system to the Clerk.
These links provide detailed advice about the issues we will face
in deciding how to meet together after the COVID pandemic fades.
July 6th, 2021: Ed Yong’s “Three Simple Rules that Underscore the Danger of Delta”
1) General Advice:
Quakers in Britain:
Coronavirus Advice for Quaker Meetings
How Do We Plan for Post-Pandemic Meetings for Worship?
A Worksheet by Bruce Reyes-Chow
2) About Hybrid Meetings for Worship:
From Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, Feb 10, 2021:
“About Hybrid Meetings: How They Work”
“The Future of Worship” retreat/seminar about models of hybrid worship among Friends. Scheduled for May 7th-9th, 2021.
3) About Reopening:
From Friends General Conference, May 28, 2020 [just a BIT premature]:
“Advices & Queries for Possibly Reopening Your Meetinghouse or Church“
Links to 3 Short Videos about Opening Up Meeting for Worship — from Quakers in Britain
a) Opening Up Where We Are: How do We Open Up and Keep the Good Stuff?
b) Opening Up the Meetingplace: Practicalities
c) The Way Forward and Worshipping Together
4) Meeting Documents
Considerations about Resuming (written in June, 2020; though the COVID spread is now lower, the document is still relevant its treatment of the issues)
Notes from the April 18th 2021 Threshing Meeting (on the issues we will need to address in order to resume meeting in the Meetinghouse)
Ministry and Oversight discerned the following list of objectives that Friends voiced at this Threshing Meeting. They may or may not be in conflict with each other.