San Antonio

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Diocesan Guidelines
at St. Luke’s, San Antonio

We are back to our pre COVID-19 worship schedule with some minor adjustments. Our 9 am Family Worship Service has returned to the schedule and will be held outside on the lawn. This will allow our  Sextons to clean the church thoroughly between the 8 am and 11 am services. The schedule is:
    • 8:00 am Holy Eucharist, Rite One. This will be a spoken service, with opening and closing hymns.
    • 9:00 am Holy Eucharist, Rite One. Our Family Worship Service features our Contemporary Music Team. This service is held outside on the South lawn. We ask you to use our RSVP system for this service only. This will help our team prepare our outside space for worship.
    • 11:00 am Holy Eucharist, Rite Two, featuring the music that we’ve enjoyed the past couple of months on the livestream: traditional hymns, along with music offered by our Contemporary Music Team.
    • 6:00 pm Holy Eucharist, Rite Two. As it has been in the recent past, this will be a spoken service with no music, followed by an opportunity for prayers for healing.

Sunday Worship

  1. St. Luke’s will schedule two sextons for Sunday morning, who will clean the worship spaces after services. After each service, sextons will disinfect seats and pews, as well as items and public surfaces (e.g. door knobs, water fountains, contact areas in restrooms, etc.) that come into contact with attendees.
  2. Our initial plan will not make use of the golf cart for driving people to the Narthex entrance.
  3. On Sundays, signs will remind people of:
    1. expectations that people wear masks
    2. good hygiene practices
    3. at-risk populations
    4. symptoms that should preclude someone from coming to church
  4. Hand sanitizer will be available in the narthex and in other interior locations.
  5. Prayer Books, Hymnals, Bibles will be removed from pews, to simplify the cleaning process after services.
  6. Initially, the Name Tag Boards will be covered up, to minimize traffic in that part of the Narthex.
  7. Masks will be available in the narthex for people who need one.
  8. [UPDATE: As of 3/7 the Nursery is now open! Parishioners must reserve a spot for the 9 am, 11 am, or Monday Mom’s Group. The nursery will be closed in between services for cleaning so there will be no childcare for Sunday school at this time.] Although the nursery will not be staffed, it will be available for diaper changes.
  9. Signs in the restrooms will remind people to wash their hands and maintain social distancing. At multi-stall restrooms, signs will limit occupancy to two people at any particular time.
  10. Floor of the Center Aisle of the NaveMarkers in the center aisle will indicate the 6’ distance that people should maintain while waiting in line to receive Communion.
  11. Doors
    1. Locked interior and exterior doors will be labeled, so that people know not to touch them.
    2. Doors from the Nave to the Narthex shall be kept open all Sunday morning and for the Sunday evening service, so that people are not touching the doors as the enter/exit the Nave.
    3. The door from the Narthex to the Parlors will remain open.
    4. We will initially let people open exterior doors themselves, encouraging them to use hand sanitizer after they’ve entered the building.
  1. Initially, to minimize movement, none of the services will have liturgical processions.
  2. Distribution of bulletins
    1. We encourage you to bring your own bulletins! We will continue to make bulletins available Saturday night by email – you can print your bulletin at home, or bring a phone or tablet and view the bulletin electronically.
    2. Some bulletins will be available in the Narthex for people to pick up. Rather than handing bulletins to worshipers, Ushers can point out the bulletins to people who need them.
    3. When you depart, please take your bulletin with you, or dispose of paper bulletins in the recycling bins in the Narthex on your way out.
  3. Seating
    1. In the Nave and the Christ the King (CtK) Chapel, seating will be available in every other pew, with guides to indicate the 6’ gap that worshipers should maintain while seated (this restriction does not apply to members of the same household).
    2. Once the Nave and the CtK Chapel are filled to capacity, ushers will direct people to the Parlors, and then to the Parish Hall, where overflow seating will allow them to watch the service on monitors.
  4. Offering plates
    Offering plates will not be passed, but will be available in the Sanctuary and Narthex.
  5. Preparation, Consecration, and Distribution of Communion:
    1. Communion will be distributed in one kind only (bread, no wine) until further notice; we will offer regular and gluten-free wafers.
    2. Ministers distributing the Sacrament will wash hands in the Altar Guild Sacristy for 20 seconds, prior to distribution.
    3. The bread and wine are covered during the Eucharistic Prayer.
    4. Clergy and Eucharistic Ministers are required to wear a face mask during distribution, covering nose, mouth, and chin. Gloves are optional.
    5. Ministers will avoid hand-to-hand contact when distributing a communion wafer, even if wearing gloves, by dropping the wafer into the hands of the recipient.
    6. Communicants will receive the wafer while standing (no kneeling), at the front of the Nave. Distribution will happen at the bottom of the chancel steps, and Ushers will direct people forward.
    7. We remember the Church’s teaching about Spiritual Communion: that those who do not come forward to receive, as well as those watching from home, can receive the spiritual benefits of Communion.
  6. After the Dismissal, Ushers will direct people to leave, starting at the back of the Nave and working their way toward the front.
  7. Role of Ushers
    1. Ushers will be trained not to shake hands or embrace attendees.
    2. Ushers will check to ensure that people are wearing masks, and offer to provide a mask to someone who shows up without one. Ushers will be trained on how to encourage people graciously to wear masks.
    3. Ushers will receive training on maintaining social distancing between households as people come up to receive Communion.

of Staff and

  1. The church will screen staff and volunteers when they arrive at the church, on Sundays and on weekdays, for potential signs of illness. 
  2. The church will send home any employee or volunteer who has any new or worsening signs and symptoms of possible COVID-19.
  3. The church will prevent employees or volunteers with any new or worsening signs and symptoms, listed above, from returning to work until specified criteria are met.
  4. The church will not allow an employee or volunteer with known close contact to a person who is lab-confirmed to have COVID-19 to return to work until the end of the 14-day self-quarantine period, from the last date of exposure.
  5. The church will require employees or volunteers to wash or sanitize their hands upon entering church facilities.
  6. The church will require employees or volunteers to maintain at least 6 feet of separation from other individuals.
  7. The church will ask employees, volunteers, and attendees to wear cloth face coverings or non-medical grade face masks over their nose and mouth.
  8. The church will encourage people who are in at-risk populations to refrain from volunteering.

Activity at St. Luke’s Beyond Sunday Worship

  1. The church will not provide meals, food, or drinks of any kind, on Sundays or during the week.
  2. On weekdays, sextons will clean and disinfect any regularly touched surfaces frequently during ‘business hours’ and at the end or beginning of the day (ex. doorknobs, tables, chairs, and restroom facilities).
  3. Staff and volunteers will be trained on appropriate cleaning and disinfection, hand hygiene, and respiratory etiquette. Employees will be trained not to shake hands or embrace attendees.
  4. Formation Classes, Coffee Hour, and Outreach
    1. In-person fellowship, coffee hour, meals, bible studies, Sunday School, etc. are still suspended until further notice; this includes all children and youth activities and all other meetings, gatherings, and programs outside of worship.
    2. Outreach ministries that are meeting an immediate need can continue to operate as long as the protocols for health and safety are in place, including social distancing.

Other Services
Baptisms, Weddings, Funerals, etc.

  1. Weddings and funerals, including graveside services, are permitted.
  2. Wedding coordinators must agree to abide by your church’s protocols.
  3. Regarding funerals, we will coordinate with funeral homes to maintain their protocols as well as ours.
  4. The same social distancing, sanitizing, worship service protocols, precautions, and guidelines must be used for these services as a Sunday Worship Service.
  5. Requests for Baptisms will be deferred until a later time, except in cases of emergency.
  6. If the Rector receives requests for other worship services, the Rector will not proceed until receiving approval from the Bishop.
  7. Childcare
    1. Per diocesan requirements, childcare services are not available at this time.


  1. In our regular email communications and social media posts, we will encourage members of at-risk populations to stay home and watch the live-streamed service.
  2. We will use various methods to continue to encourage online giving.
  3. Digital versions of the Sunday bulletins will be made available ahead of time, with all bulletins being emailed on Saturday evening, and the 10:30am bulletin being tagged to the Facebook Live post.