COVID-19 Response Updates

All in-person church-sponsored activities, including in-person worship services, are online until at least May 2021. Worship services will be offered live and online.

Your leadership wants to keep you updated on the latest AUUC COVID-19 response. Please refer to these letters for specific updates.

From Your AUUC Executive Committee, 6/25/2020

Dear Beloved Accotink UU Community,

The AUUC Board of Directors voted on June 18 to follow our consciences and heed the guidance of the UUA to continue our physical distancing measures until at least May 2021. This means that all in-person church services and use of the building and grounds for church-related activities and events must not occur during this time. Worship services, meetings, and other events and activities will continue to be held online or via phone. The Board and Executive Committee will continue to monitor the situation, and, should it become safe, caring, and morally justified for our community to meet in person before May 2021, we will reassess this determination.

Until May of 2021, the building will only be open for staff and volunteers performing essential church operations. While AUUC groups and most renters will not be allowed to use the building until the congregation returns, we will allow Spring-Mar Cooperative Preschool to access the building, should they desire to do so. As educators, Spring-Mar provides an essential service to our community and their operations must be in compliance with the Virginia guidelines applicable to schools. 

Individuals and household groups may continue to enjoy our Nearly Native Garden, Medicine Wheel, and Memorial Garden outdoor spaces (note: there is no restroom access). The playground will continue to be closed, given the tactile nature of its use and the difficulty maintaining social distancing by its users. Those who wish to plan a memorial service or other celebration are encouraged to contact Rev. Pippin to discuss.

Friends, please understand that this was not an easy decision for the BOD to make. We weighed the risks of potential viral contamination of our congregation and the wider community with whom we have contact, against the desire to be physically in touch again. We discussed possible alternative methods of providing worship services. We believe that we have a very strong online capability. Our Sunday virtual worship services are extremely successful. We are creatively holding classes, meetings, and other gatherings through Zoom. The mission of our church is being carried out, even more so by remaining physically distanced in order to extend our care to all who are most impacted by the virus, within our congregation and beyond.  

The year ahead will look different than years past. We acknowledge that this change is difficult. We encourage anyone who has not yet joined us for virtual worship to please do so – check here for information on the upcoming Sunday and links to videos of previous sermons. Our Events Page and Facebook page are continually updated with upcoming activities that you can participate in. Our Pastoral Care Team ([email protected]) is ready to discuss any challenges that you may be feeling. Our Tech Team ([email protected]) is available to assist in learning to use Zoom. The Board of Directors ([email protected]) also welcomes any feedback or ideas you may have.

In the words of Rev. Pippin, “What we can be in this world is far more than our physical presence. What we can be, what the holy is always calling us toward, is to be a mighty presence of love.”

With gratitude and care of each of you, 

Rev. Pippin Whitaker, Minister
Kristina Watts, Board President
Peter Kahle, Board Vice President
Joe Tuggle, Board Financial Adviser
Vanessa Hall, Program Council Chair