What is Durham Friends Meeting Doing About Coronavirus? — a message from Ministry and Counsel

UPDATE 3/19/20: Sunday Worship will be conducted via ZOOM until further notice.

Meeting link:     https://zoom.us/j/2814426094      Click here to join by video and audio
Phone number:     +1 301 715 8592    Dial this to listen only
Meeting ID:    281 442 6094  

Together with every other organization and community across the globe, Durham Friends Meeting is faced with questions about what to do with the threat of possible Coronavirus infection in our midst.  Some of the answers will have to be made together, and others are for each individual or family to answer on their own.

We are a worship community.  Gathering together is what we do.  We gather for worship, for prayer, for study, for support, for fellowship and for fun.  In normal times, we gather strength from gathering together.  But in the current situation, we may do each other harm. 

The situation is likely to change.  We’ll be learning more about the risks and best approaches.  We expect that the current situation will last at least until mid-April.  Members of Ministry and Counsel, together with the Clerk, will monitor the situation and make decisions.  We’ll send out information on e-mail, and we’ll try to see that those who do not receive e-mail receive phone calls. 

For the present, here is how we will proceed. 

  • We will have 1st Day Worship each Sunday as regularly scheduled.  Attend if you wish but by all means stay away if you think that is what is best for your health.  Please read medical updates about who is most at risk and what precautions to take.  Someone from M&C will be on the facing bench.  There may or may not be a speaker.  There may or may not be anyone to play the piano. 
  • If you do come to Meeting, we urge that no one shake hands or embrace, and that those who attend sit a distance from one another. 
  • We will not have refreshments after Meeting for the time being, but those who choose can still socialize with one another.
  • We will cancel Monthly Meeting for Business this Sunday (March 15). 
  • We will cancel the Family Game Night and Potluck this Saturday (March 14). 
  • Other committees and groups should make their own decisions about whether (and when and how) to meet.  If you use the Meetinghouse, be sure all surfaces are sanitized before leaving. 

We need to care for one another.  Please stay in touch by phone, e-mail and other means.  By all means ask questions of M&C if you have them, and we will try to answer them or point you to someone who can. 

With God’s love and strength, and with support from one another, we will get through this.

Martha Hinshaw Sheldon, Co-Clerk of the Meeting

Sukie Rice, Co-Clerk of the Meeting

Doug Bennett              Tess Hartford

Renee Cote                 Joyce Gibson

Brown Lethem            Wendy Schlotterbeck

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