Click on the map for Lamar County data

How Does The Health and Wellness Team Decide on Gathering Inside?

Rather than being shaped by the news cycle or responding to activity in other parts of the state, we are applying Lamar County guidelines available here.

The map shows four conditions:

  • Green: On track for containment
  • Yellow: Spreading in community
  • Orange: Accelerated spread
  • Red: Tipping point for stay at home

We will meet in person and inside when conditions are green or yellow. 

The process used is based on the number of new cases in Lamar County, and adjusting them for our population to determine the intensity level of the virus spread in our area.

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August 3, 2020 Update

We continue at condition orange. We will not gather inside for worship on August 9 or August 16. Over the last week, there were 29 new cases, from 192 (July 25) to 221 (August 1).


One of the resources we watch is the Georgia Tech event risk assessment model. For Lamar county, when a group of 100 people gathers, there is 93% chance that at least 1 COVID-19 positive individual will be present. For a gathering of 25, the risk falls to 49%. For a gathering of ten people, the risk is 24%. This is why we encourage people to wear masks and stay six feet apart. We have to act as though everyone we meet (including ourselves) is contagious. Masks, distancing, outside, and shorter times together are the best ways to prevent the spread.

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July 27, 2020 Update

The number of new cases this week was 33. We continue at condition orange. We will not gather inside for worship on August 2 or August 9.


We will offer worship on the lawn on August 2. This will be a shorter service, more like Sunrise Service in length, with groups gathering in the shade at 7 am, 8 am, 9 am, and 10 am. The service will also be recorded that morning and then made available on YouTube at 10 am. Reserve a place for you or your family by email with the number of people and time you will attend.


View the full Monday report here.

July 19, 2020

Interview of Sean Parker

Sean Parker is a member of Barnesville First UMC and a health care professional working in Upson County. Watch and share the video here.

Sean describes the current conditions related to Covid-19 in our area, and how this has impacted him and family members. He even gives a few tips for those who have a hard time wearing a mask (9:10).

Thank you Sean Parker for your insights, and for serving on the Health and Wellness Team.

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July 19, 2020 Update

The number of new cases this week was 17. We continue at condition orange. We will not gather inside for worship on July 26 or August 2.

We will offer worship on the lawn on August 2. This will be a shorter service, more like Sunrise Service in length, with groups gathering in the shade at 7 am, 8 am, 9 am, and 10 am. The service will include a new virtual choir selection, In Remembrance. The service will also be available on YouTube at 10 am for those who are not comfortable gathering. Reserve a place for you or your family by emailing the office with the number of people and time you will attend.

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July 12, 2020 Update

Every week the Health and Wellness Team (listed at the end of this email) reviews Covid-19 conditions in our area and sets procedures for how and when we can safely gather in person.


We will not gather inside for worship on July 19 or July 26.


The full announcement, available here, includes a description of the process used for determining in-person gatherings. 

July 2, 2020

Live streaming begins July 12

The church will begin live streaming worship from the sanctuary on July 12 at 10:00 am on YouTube (available to watch in progress and afterwards) and Zoom (10:00 only).


For the first two services, July 12 and 19, the sanctuary will be limited to the worship and production leaders.


Read the full newsletter article here.

June 24, 2020

Survey Results: Part 2

Read the full report here, with how we are addressing your suggestions and questions:

  • Does the air conditioning system present a risk? Do we need to have an air purifier? 
  • Should disinfectant wipes also be available at the entrance to the sanctuary?
  • Will there be bulletins?
  • Temp checks & ushers to ask leave if high.
  • No removal of mask. If to blow nose, leave. Ushers to ask leave if multiple sneezing, sniffling, coughing.
  • Mask must cover nose & mouth.

June 18, 2020

Survey Results - Part 1

You have shared many concerns in the survey and ideas for how the Health and Wellness Team can address these. A summary of your responses is here.


Using your input, we have set a target worship service in mid-July, assuming that conditions in Lamar County are conducive to gathering in person.

June 2, 2020

Church survey

The Health and Wellness Team invites your participation in a survey of the congregation. The survey is in this week's mailed Steeple Chimes and call also be accessed here where then link is available.

May 28, 2020

Health & Wellness Team

The Health and Wellness Committee shapes and then guides the process for in-person ministry at Barnesville First United Methodist Church. Thank you to our team:

  • Leesa Woodall (chair), 
  • Jim Ozier, Head Usher
  • Wayne Cook, Worship Committee Chair
  • Dr. Lee Woodall,
  • Sean Parker, medical practitioner in Upson County.
  • Kris Thomas, Trustee

In addition to their experience and skills, every one of them has great love for God and for the people of our church and community. Please be in prayer for them and our church.

Read more in the May 28 newsletter.

April 22, 2020

Guidance from the Conference

Bishop Sue Haupert-Johnson and our Conference Cabinet have consulted with experts in public health and the medical field on how churches might prepare to offer in-person worship again. 


They continue to add resources to the guidelines (read here).