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Bethel UMC becomes first ‘Pioneer Church’ in district

Bethel United Methodist Church, Onemo, has become the first “Pioneer Church” in the Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church in the York River District. According to the VAUMC website, Pioneer Churches are those that volunteer to open their doors for in-person worship services with strict guidelines in place.

According to the VAUMC website, worshippers attending a Pioneer Church are required to wear a mask at all times from the moment they leave their vehicle until the moment they return. The rules also require that people maintain strict physical distancing inside the church at all times and that the churches can only have up to 25 people in their buildings at a time.

To be able to accommodate all active members, Bethel was open on Sunday for three different services at 8:30, 9:30 and 10:45 a.m.

According to Jill Hammond of Bethel, the church originally planned to open up for drive-in Sunday services. Because of a lack of equipment, this was not possible. Since Bet...

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