401 SE 15th Ave.
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301

Safely Reopening Together

Last Thursday the session approved the following framework to follow for moving to phase 1 and then phase 2 of reopening.



(Case Data uploaded from the Florida DOH: https://experience.arcgis.com/experience/7572b118dc3c48d885d1c643c195314e/)

  1. The team recommends opening the church for structured live worship on September 20, 2020 at 11:00 AM.
  • Broward County has met its reopening criteria(Case Data uploaded from the Florida DOH: https://experience.arcgis.com/experience/7572b118dc3c48d885d1c643c195314e/)and now the church is in Phase 1 listed on the Detailed Schematic of the Four Phases.   However, with the church’s air conditioner issues, the installer thinks it would be safe to commit to having the new system operational by September 20. Therefore, that date was selected in order to have a comfortable environment for service.


  1. The team recommends holding a practice service with only volunteers and worship leaders on September 13, 2020.
    • The team has identified types of volunteers who would be needed to safely handle worship services when the church reopens.Volunteers would be needed for the following:
      • Parking Lots: (directing cars to allow families to social distance.
      • Sign in: (recording attendance, providing masks, hand sanitizers; taking temperature)
  • Ushers: Usher congregants in and out of service in a safe, socially distance manner.

The practice service, conducted prior to the church opening, will help volunteers be ready to assist in a safe, compassionate manner.


  • The team recommends we adopt the World Health Organizations recommendation for reopening as our criteria to move to Phase 2 (listed on the Detailed Schematic of the Four Phases). Specifically,Broward County positivity rate should remain at 5% or lower for least 14 days.

Brief Description of the Four Phases

Pre-Opening:  Our Current Phase

Phase One: Resumption of limited worship. Staff members may choose to meet with a group of no more than 10 people in a public location while observing CDC social distancing guidelines unless otherwise specified in Detailed Schematic of the Four Phases. We will begin in the Sanctuary.

Phase Two:Increased worship service, on-site church meetings can begin to resume on campus with adequate safety guidelines.

Phase Three: Campus is fully opened and outside groups can begin utilizing our facilities.


Pastor Patrick Wrisley previously shared a letter and more information on the reopening with friends and family of First Pres.

Click here to read Pastor Wrisley’s letter in full. 

Click here for a list of frequently asked questions and answers on the reopening. 

Click here to read the full Task Force Report to the Session and the Presbytery for reopening in Phase 1.