Pandemic Update – Mar 17

Dear Holy Trinity Members, Visitors and Volunteers,

As you know, these are uncertain times. We are having frequent discussions and check-ins among parish leaders. We are making decisions and then having to re-visit them. In all of this we are mindful of the presented risks and of the effects on those who depend on us.

In the day to day operational decisions in this time, our Vestry Executive Committee (VEC) has placed its trust in our Community Director, Zachary Grant, to do what he believes is in the best interest of our members, friends, visitors and the broader community, including the most vulnerable. He will consult as needed and make the choices that must be made and keep the community up to date as to the current status of our services via this site and our community email list.

At present, as long as volunteers are available, and as long as no realistic alternative for daytime shelter and food exists, we will offer service of sandwiches or other take-away food at a table beside the Homeless Memorial from noon until 1pm Mon-Fri. We have been told that the city is about to open new emergency shelters, possibly in concert with the Red Cross or the federal government. We hope that this is true and happens quickly. When a meaningful response is made, we will cease our own open hours immediately. We are reassessing daily.

Caretakers will remain on site in the absence of other staff and continue their work while limiting contact with each other. They will not be answering the door.

There is a special risk for some of our members. If you are 65 or older, please do not offer to volunteer on site. This is also true if you are immune-compromised, especially with respect to respiratory problems. We strongly suggest that you also take this higher level of precaution if live with someone who is immune-compromised. Please do not use public transit if you are in an at risk group or live with someone who is.

If you are in this situation, we will support you in getting what you need. Please reach out on the HTList or by phone to the office if you need assistance. We will also try to work out a way to check in with all of you, but please reach out if that doesn’t happen for some reason. It is likely safe to go outside for a walk, but if you are in an at risk group, please let others shop for you and drop things off. Please abandon thoughts of gathering with more than one or two friends and then do so at a 2 metre distance. This all sounds terrible, because it is. But this seems to be the best we can do in these times.

If you are feeling frustrated or stir-crazy, please reach out and talk to someone in the community to strategize some ways to use your skills without putting yourself at undue risk. You are all important to our community and we’d like to keep you as part of us not lost to needless heroism.

We will be continuing our Zoom gatherings on Sundays and may add other gatherings of a more ad hoc nature if people find them helpful. As we settle into some kind of rhythm we’ll undoubtedly have some clever ideas about what we can do for ourselves and for the cause of community and justice.

You are loved. We are all in this together, even if we are apart.

Keith Nunn,