January 20, 2021
Dear members of Fundy St. Lawrence Dawning Waters Regional Council (NB and Gaspé, Quebec):
Currently for New Brunswick: Zones 1,2,3, and 4 are in the Red Level,
Quebec: Because of the recent changes in the epidemiological situation, all of Québec, except the Cree Territory of James Bay and Nunavik, will be on Maximum Alert (red zone) from January 9 up to and including February 8, 2021.
Please note that through an email from Department of Health (NB), that as of today the order allows only virtual services. Those who need to go to the church to provide the virtual service may enter the church with the appropriate protocols to record the service. More information is coming in the next couple of days with respect to Pastoral Care, Funerals and Weddings. However, at this point it is recommended that worship services pastoral care be conducted over the phone or virtually by zoom, or other virtual means.
Prohibited, except for places of worship (maximum of 10 people in attendance) and funerals (a maximum of 25 people excluding the staff of the funeral establishment and volunteers inside or outside the building. Keeping an attendance register is mandatory). Moreover, no food or alcohol can be served.
New Brunswick and Gaspé: Sunday Schools and Youth Groups
If your community of faith finds itself within a Red Zone, for Sunday Schools and Youth Groups: DO NOT GATHER in person. Online gatherings are the safest way to meet with these age groups. The recommended guidelines for online gatherings are as follows:
- As with in person programs, all leaders must have a Police Record Check and Vulnerable Sector Check completed and a copy (not the original) held by the Community of Faith.
- When in an online activity, there must be two leaders present at all times.
- During a gathering, if a one on one conversation happens, take notes.
- Consent forms indicating permission for online programming should be signed by guardians if the participants are under the age of consent.
- Ensure that schedule for being online is shared with parents/guardians.
- Make sure that all rules are clear, just like in person gatherings.
- When using Zoom or other online platforms, use accounts that belong to your community of faith. Leaders should NEVER use personal accounts for group gatherings.
- Never post links for gatherings in public places. Always email participants directly. This is to avoid, as much as possible, unwanted attendees.
- When using Zoom, always use the waiting room function, only admitting known participants.
- When using the “chat function,” ensure participants know that even the “private” chat function can be viewed and will be saved.
- When you save records of chats, make sure they are sent to the office of your community of faith. Never store them on a personal device.
- In case of an emergency with a participant, ensure that you know where they are physically located so that local authorities (fire, police, etc.) can be contacted if necessary.
- Know how to mute your participants and how to turn off their camera if you suspect they might be doing something inappropriate, such as going to the bathroom, having another conversation, etc.
In the Gaspé region of Quebec, gatherings are also not allowed under public health rules, so if gathering online, the above list should also be your guide.
Orange Level of Recovery in New Brunswick:
There are still a few zones in the province in the Orange Phase of recovery. Should your community of faith find itself in one of these zones, here are some guidelines to follow:
- Have designated space apart from the worship space for children and youth to gather which enables social distancing protocols. “Time for all ages” is not recommended at this time, to prevent children mixing in the worship space with other adults who may be gathered.
- Upon entry into the building, children and youth should be greeted by a greeter and taken to the designated space, after completing appropriate screening protocols. Children/youth, like adults, should be asked the COVID questions before entering space.
- Children and youth are met by their teachers, socially distanced and placed in position following social distance protocols.
- Individual craft supplies and Sunday school material shall be provided for each participant and sanitized at the end of the session.
- At the conclusion of your time together, parents/guardians should indicate to the greeters to retrieve their child/youth. They exit as a family grouping/bubble.
- If a child/youth requires a parent/guardian at any time during the session, they should indicate that need to their leader who will inform the greeter/usher to retrieve the parents/guardians, respecting social distancing guidelines.
- At this time, no programming for children under school age shall occur. Those children must remain in the worship space with their adults. Children/youth who are school age shall wear masks and follow social distancing rules.
- For all gathering in person with children and youth is allowed, please consider online gatherings where possible (following the guidelines above for those times).
These guidelines are set out, based on public health documents, and in consultation with The United Church of Canada’s emergency response documents.
Holding you all in prayer as we pivot again in into this new reality.
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to be in contact Catherine Stuart, Regional Minister for Children, Youth and Young Adults at email@example.com or at 1-800-268-3781 ext. 6158 or Faith March-MacCuish, Executive Minister at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 1-800-268-3781 ext. 6156.
Previous updates are available in date order using this link
or by clicking on Quick Links, Regional Covid-19 Updates, Links and Notices at the top right of this page.
Emergency Coordinator for Fundy St. Lawrence Dawning Waters Regional Council and Regional Council 15 Office is Tracey Rose and she will be the person who will send out communication to the Regions.
Fundy St. Lawrence Dawning Waters Regional Council / Regional Council 15
Phone: 1-800-268-3781 | Ext. 6142
- COVID-19 Updates, Links and Notices (Updated as received)
- COVID – 19 United Church Statement (includes a link at the bottom of the page to guidelines)
- Ecumenical Response to Outbreak in China
- Employee and Family Assistance Program
- Care for people at higher risk (from the Centre for Disease Control)
- World Health Organization page – Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak
- Government of New Brunswick
- Government of Prince Edward Island
- Government of Quebec