On May 19th 2020, BC entered Phase 2 of our provincial government's plan to restart British Columbia.  Outlined in Phase 2 and confirmed by Dr. Bonnie Henry on May 13th in her live update, “religious services can be held with safe physical distancing”  of up to 50 people providing they can fit safely in a meeting space.
Since that time, Oceanside’s Eldership Team have been assessing ways that we might hold small weekend gatherings again during this phase in accordance with BC Provincial Guidelines along with consultation with The Nanaimo Christian School.
We are pleased to announce that beginning in June Oceanside will be opening up again in a limited capacity and with our meeting space revamped to meet all the guidelines from the BC Government and WorkSafeBC.
We will be continuing to offer a online streamed service on Sunday mornings and are well aware that, although while we can meet all the requirements set out by our government, we are all at different stages as individuals of being able to meet together. Everyone’s situation is different.
Going forward we are making available 3 limited capacity, by-registration, services over Saturday and Sunday, as well as our Sunday morning online Streamed Service as normal. These will take place at:
Sunday Online Stream: 9:30am [link]
Registering online for a service:
We are limited to 50 people within the auditorium including volunteers and children so everyone will need to register before arriving to a service. If a meeting time is full we ask you to please select another service or kindly wait until registration for the following week.
Registration will allow people to know if we have capacity or not as the meeting sizes are so much smaller than our regular gatherings. Thank you for understanding.
Head online to oceansidechurch.ca/register. Registration, for the coming weekend will open after the Sunday morning livestream each week so it is first available to those who were not about to make it that Sunday.
How we are making decisions:
As you know the response, rules and reopening guidelines to Covid-19 vary widely from country to country and even between provinces. At Oceanside Church we will be following the guidelines set out by the BC Government and WorkSafeBC. We respect and trust these guidelines and the restart plan that our provincial government has put in place. We know that our local government has our best interests in mind and we want to support them as they protect the weak the vulnerable.
Again, we are confident in our provincial health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, as she and her team lead us in safely meeting together again. And, we know that the situation is also dynamic so be assured that we are paying close attention to provincial and federal guidance as it changes.
What a Weekend Service will look like:
Step 1. Pre-Registration
Head online to oceansidechurch.ca/register. Registration, for the coming weekend will open at 10:30am each Sunday morning.
Step 2. Screening & Hand Sanitizing
Before entry to the building, each family will be asked some simple screening questions and will then be asked to sanitize their hands before entry to the auditorium. Screening people and making sure we stay home if we are feeling sick is one of our most effective ways in slowing the spread of Covid-19. Please arrive around 20 minutes early for the service, as we will only be able to screen and allow one family at a time to sanitize their hands before the next group or individual is admitted.
Step 3. Finding a seat & keeping social distancing
Once you’ve sanitized your hands you are welcome to join us in the auditorium. Seats will be spread out to allow all 50 people into the gymnasium while distanced. Families will be able to sit together.
It is very important that everyone maintains social distancing while on the School and Church premises. Even if you are more relaxed than others may be, we ask that while we are on site together that we follow a social distance of 2 meters or 6 feet between those who are not in our immediate families. We welcome children as well, however they will need to be supervised to also meet the provincial guidelines.
Step 4. Service as normal
Our services will start at the advertised time, with our Saturday evening service being filmed for release on Sunday morning online. Services will feel much like they did before the shutdown albeit with less people. However things like communion, tithes and offering, and prayer will look a little different.
Step 5. Community
Community is an important part of our faith and spiritual well being. After and before the service you are welcome to have some community together as we would normally do on a regular Sunday. However please stay more than 2 meters / 6 feet if you are talking and limit your interactions where possible. Outside spaces are also a great opportunity to further limit the spread of Covid-19.
Step 6. Leaving the service
Feel free to wash you hands again as you leave the service and follow the directions where visible.
Step 7. Cleaning between services
During the time between services our staff and volunteers will clean surfaces and equipment that has been used.
Childcare & Children in the Service:At this time we do not yet have provisions for childcare. However, we are working on a plan in accordance with BC Childcare Guidelines  and hopefully will have some form of childcare available during the Sunday services in the months to come. Stay tuned for more information. Your children are welcome in our regular services provided they are registered (no matter how small they are) and that they can comply with the distancing requirements in those main services under your supervision.
FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions:
Should we wear masks?
Currently masks are not being mandated in spaces where it is possible to be socially distant from one another. Currently federal guidance encourages mask use in places such as public transport where spaces are small and enclosed. However, you are welcome to wear a mask to the service unless you are ill which in that case we would ask you to stay at home.
Is it safe for my child to come to childcare when it's available?
Advice from Dr. Trevor Corneil who is the Medical Lead of The Office of the Provincial Health Officer has advised that children can attend multiple daycare programs with additional suggestions . When we have a detailed plan in place for safe childcare we will post it here
This article was last updated on July 21st, 2020