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

Safely Reopening Together

November 23, 2020 Update

  1. In the last few weeks, Florida as well as our own Broward County, has continued to see increase in the Covid-19 positivity rate. At this time there is no definitive standard for when to discontinue in-person ministries. In an attempt to be proactive, the team discussed various benchmarks for this kind of decision. As such, the team recommends the following:


Or, in the alternative, if two of the following three criteria (b,c,d) are met, First Presbyterian Church shall temporarily discontinue in-person ministries:


  • b. If there is a closure of hospital visitation in two of the following four primary Broward County hospitals: Broward Health System, Memorial Hospital System, Cleveland Clinic, and Holy Cross Hospital.
  • c. If there is a recommendation by State or Local Government to close churches.
  • d. If there is a recommendation by CDC to close churches.


In the event of any of the above we will revert to pre-phase.


2. Reopening, in the event of a closure, will move to reopen according to the previously approved recommendations. Specifically, two consecutive weeks for Broward County in all of the following:

  • a. Downward trajectory of influenza-like illness (ILI)
  • b. Downward trajectory of COVID-19-like illnesses (fever, cough, shortness of breath)
  • c. Downward trajectory of documented COVID-19 cases OR Downward trajectory of positive tests as a percentage of total tests.

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.