COVID-19 Communication from East Union

July 29, 2021 Updated Safety Guidelines for East Union Mennonite Church about meeting in person (our online Zoom option continues as well if you are not able to meet in person):

We are so thankful to East Union folks for continuing to think about the well-being of others! Everyone has done a tremendous job over the past almost 17 months, and we give thanks for your faithful consideration. These past months have been incredibly difficult when it comes to physical distancing, quarantining, masking, and giving up so many of the activities that help us to build relationships as a congregation.

That is why we were so thankful that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) revised their masking and physical distancing recommendations on Thusday, May 13, 2021.  However, as the Delta variant virus is increasing in many parts of the world and our state, the CDC has made new recommendations regarding masking as of July 27 (Click here to see CDC guidelines). This includes vaccinated persons wearing masks in public indoor settings in areas of substantial or high transmission.  At this point, Johnson and Washington Counties are not substantial or high transmission counties. We will be monitoring closely if this changes.

At East Union, we would ask that you continue to abide by the CDC’s recommendations, especially to protect those who can’t be vaccinated, including persons who are immunocompromised and children. Here are the new ways that this will affect worship and gathering at East Union:

  • For those who have been fully vaccinated, the CDC advises:
    • Use your discretion to determine if and when you need to wear a face covering.
    • Wear a covering in indoor settings if our area/county becomes a substantial or high transmission area. 
    • You may choose to wear a face covering regardless of the level of transmission, particularly if you are immunocompromised or at increased risk for severe disease from COVID-19, or if you have someone in your household who is immunocompromised, at increased risk of severe disease, or not fully vaccinated.
    • Physical distancing is not required.
  • For those unvaccinated, the CDC advises:
    • Face coverings should be worn in the church building and should cover both the nose and mouth. (exception children younger than school age)
    • Maintain safe distances while in the church building.

The Preparedness Team and Elders will continue to monitor the CDC recommendations throughout the summer, and they will revise and update East Union’s guidelines as needed.

If you have ongoing questions or concerns, it is important that you express those to the proper people. Please contact someone from the Preparedness Team (Janet Geyer, Elvesta Hochstedler, Nyle Kauffman, Will Miller, or Greg Yoder) or the Elders (Karen Harvey, Will Miller, Grace Rempel, & Marv Slabaugh). Thank you!

May 26, 2021 notice:

We are so thankful to East Union folks for continuing to think about the well-being of others! Everyone has done a tremendous job over the last 14 months, and we give thanks for your faithful consideration. This past year has been incredibly difficult when it comes to physical distancing, quarantining, masking, and giving up so many of the activities that help us to build relationships as a congregation.

That is why we are so thankful that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) revised their masking and physical distancing recommendations on Thursday, May 13, 2021.

At East Union, we would ask that you continue to abide by the CDC’s recommendations, especially to protect those who can’t be vaccinated, including persons who are immunocompromised and children. Here are the new ways that this will affect worship and gathering at East Union:

  • For those who have been fully vaccinated, the CDC advises:
    • Use your discretion to determine if and when you need to wear a face covering.
    • Physical distancing is not required.
  • For those unvaccinated (including children and immunocompromised adults), the CDC advises:
    • Face coverings should be worn in the church building and should cover both the nose and mouth. (exception children younger than school age)
    • Maintain safe distances while in the church building.
  • We will begin congregational singing.
  • The drinking fountain will be reopened.
  • The Toddler Room and the nursery will both be available to families during the church service.

These updated guidelines for worship at East Union are based on the current CDC recommendations. The Preparedness Team and Elders will continue to monitor the CDC recommendations throughout the summer, and they will revise and update East Union’s guidelines as needed.

If you have ongoing questions or concerns, it is important that you express those to the proper people. Please contact someone from the Preparedness Team (Janet Geyer, Elvesta Hochstedler, Nyle Kauffman, Will Miller, or Greg Yoder) or the Elders (Karen Harvey, Will Miller, Grace Rempel, & Marv Slabaugh). Thank you!

February 28, 2021 notice:

With the lower number of Covid-19 cases in both Johnson and Washington counties and the increasing number of people vaccinated, the Preparedness Team recommends that East Union resume hybrid services starting on Sunday, March 7, 2021. In addition, the building may be used by East Union folks for church-related activities (e.g., MYF, Jr. MYF, Mennonite Women, etc.), observing the posted occupancy recommendations and safety guidelines.

Click here to find online (Zoom)  meeting information.

The following guidelines are still in place for in-person worship:

Ongoing Safety Guidelines:

  • Self-monitor and remain home if exhibiting any COVID-like symptoms such as fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, etc.)
  • Face coverings should be worn at all times in the church building and should cover both the nose and mouth (exception is children younger than school age)
  • Maintain safe distances while in the church building
  • Hand sanitizer is available upon entry and exit of the building
  • Designated pews have been marked for use during worship services. Households should sit together with at least six feet of distance between groups on the same pew
  • Observe posted occupancy recommendations throughout the building
  • Persons will be encouraged to gather outside for fellowship at safe distances
  • Children  need to be under the direct supervision of adults at all times. The toddler room will not be available on Sundays but the Nursery will.

November 20, 2020 notice:

The Preparedness Team and Church leadership ask for all church related group functions not be held at East Union at this time. We will continue to assess and update the recommendation as needed. Thank you for your ongoing patience and support for all of these safety measures. If you have any questions, please contact Joel Beachy or the church office.

‘Guidelines for the Use of East Union Mennonite Church during Covid-19’ policy (after the above restriction has been lifted). Please take a moment to look over the policy if you plan to use the building in the coming weeks and months. Thank you! Click here to read EUMC Covid-19 Building Use Policy  

November 18, 2020 notice: 

Due to the continued increased numbers of positive cases for COVID-19 in the community and surrounding areas, the leadership at East Union has decided to go to ONLINE SERVICES ONLY. When this changes, a new notice will be posted.

Sunday Morning Service – https://zoom.us/j/648223460
9:30 a.m. (Gathering)
10:00 a.m. (Service)

September 25, 2020 notice:

Join us 10:00 am this Sunday, either in-person in the sanctuary or online through Zoom!

Here are some important guidelines to remember for those of us worshipping indoors:

  • Self-monitor and remain home if exhibiting any COVID-like symptoms.
    • (e.g. Fever or chills, Cough, Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, Fatigue, Muscle or body aches, Headache, New loss of taste or smell, Sore throat, Congestion or runny nose, Nausea or vomiting, Diarrhea, etc.)
  • Face coverings should be worn at all times in the church building and should cover both the nose and mouth.
  • Hand sanitizer is available upon entry and exit of the building.
  • Designated pews have been marked for use during the service. Households should sit together with at least six feet distance between groups on the same pew.
  • Someone will dismiss persons following the end of the service to stagger exiting the building.
  • Persons will be encouraged to gather outside for fellowship at safe distances.
  • Children need to be under the direct supervision of adults at all times. The toddler room will not be available on Sunday.

Our worship, sound, and video crew will bring a live service from the church sanctuary again via Zoom this coming Sunday. You are welcome to join us online using the regular Zoom link below.

Sunday Morning Service – https://zoom.us/j/648223460
9:30 a.m. (Gathering)
10:00 a.m. (Service)

July 17, 2020 notice:

Please join us this Sunday, July 19, in-person or online!

This Sunday we will have our first in-person, outdoor service near the pavilion. We are excited to offer the following options, so all may participate safely: in-person outdoor, Zoom online, or in your car via FM Transmitter (107.1). We ask all those who join us for the in-person service to try to follow these recommendations:

  • Self-monitor for temperature and symptoms of illness before each service and stay home if anyone in the household displays symptoms.
  • Bring your own seating, water, etc. & maintain social distancing by sitting in household groups.
  • Recommend all persons attending wear masks at in-person services, excluding young kids and some for medical reasons.
  • Follow the instructions on signs in the building.
  • Limit going into the building for restrooms & mailboxes only
  • Use the south entrance door only if you need to enter the building
  • Wash hands frequently and avoid touching your face.
  • Use hand sanitizer and wipes that are available by the south entrance to the building.

We will also refrain from singing together at this time to minimize risk. Thank you for considering the safety of everyone attending!

Joel Beachy & the Preparedness Team

5/24/2020 notice: 

With so many unknowns and the safety and health of our kids and volunteers being of utmost importance, we have decided to cancel Vacation Bible School for the summer of 2020.

It is disappointing, as we always look forward to VBS, seeing God work in the lives of our kids and through our volunteers, but we are confident this is the right decision.

Thank you for your prayers and your continued support of the children of East Union.

Important Note: Starting Sunday, April 5 we will be utilizing Zoom’s Waiting Room feature to screen participants to ensure the safety of the online meeting format for our Sunday morning services. Here is a link to a YouTube video from Zoom that describes this feature: https://youtu.be/rY6gamqx5UA. Thank you!

4/2/2020 notice:

Sunday morning services at the church building are suspended going forward until we have received confirmation that it is safe to again gather in large groups. Be sure to join us each Sunday online through Zoom and stay well!

Sixth Sunday of Lent- April 5, 2020
Palm/Passion Sunday
Focus Statement

We praise Jesus along with the crowds for all we know of his miracles and goodness, but it so quickly turns this week to events that led to his death. Longing to understand Jesus more deeply, we say, “Show us how to both celebrate your life and honor your death.”

3/27/2020 notice:

On Sunday, March 29, we will hold our second service via Zoom. You are invited to start joining at 9:30 a.m. to make sure you can connect to the meeting but also to see your church friends and family! The service will begin at 10:00 a.m. We hope this may be a time for the congregation to connect with one another, pray together, reflect on scripture, and receive and offer “Signs of Hope.”

For those who wish to, following the service we will have a time of online fellowship with some randomized breakout groups. Zoom allows us to create smaller groups, so we can have a little easier time with conversations. We hope you will stay on and try this new way of connecting!

Click here for information on how to connect via Zoom

3/17/2020 notice: 

Out of an abundance of caution and in trying to stay in line with the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Iowa Department of Public Health, and state and national governments, we will not be having public gatherings at East Union Mennonite Church (CHOW, Mid-week Potluck, MYF, Venture Club, Choir, etc.) going forward until we have received confirmation that it is safe to do so. 

We will move to online worship services. The worship committee, the Audio Visual (AV) committee, and Pastor Joel Beachy are working on details now to determine the best method(s) to deliver that content, so please be on the lookout for future instructions.

Pastor Joel will be keeping office hours both physically and virtually (Tuesday – Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.). He will be available by phone and online through FaceTime or Google Hangouts. Please feel free to call, text, or email him. Our Office Manager, Crystal Wade, will be keeping her office hours as well (Tuesday & Wednesday 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. & Friday 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.), and can be reached by phone or email.

This year at East Union we have adopted the verse Psalm 46:10 “Be still and know that I am God.” Earlier in the chapter, we are reminded of God’s strength, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore, we will not fear, though the earth should change . . .” As we continue to live into this new normal, may we have patience and grace for one another. We encourage you to continue to utilize those methods of communication that are still available to all of us: phone calls, emails, text messages, social media, cards, letters, etc.

We are in the Lenten season, and this is the time for us to be letting go of our normal routines and trusting in God. May we be keeping our eyes, minds, and hearts open to Signs of Hope. We may not be able to gather physically during this time, but we can share with one another through calls, emails, texts and social media platforms the ways we see hope in what God is doing. May it be so.

East Union Mennonite Church Contact Information:
Phone: (319) 656-2590
Website: eastunionmennonite.org
E-Mail: eucares@kctc.net