HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Church goers will find themselves in the pews again this weekend.
Some of Huntsville’s biggest churches have thousands of members. Half of them will return for the first time in months, but the rest will have to remain home. So here’s what some of these churches are doing.
If there’s a weekend to minister the word for first time face-to-face, Pentecostal Sunday would be the day.
The Rock Family Worship Center
“We have missed our people,” the Rock Family Worship Center Lead Pastor Rusty Nelson. “We missed the family here, and it’s going to be wonderful to be able to see faces whether they have a mask or not. It’s going to be wonderful to gather again.”
The Rock Family Worship Center can seat 1,500 people in the sanctuary. That doesn’t even include the other gathering rooms.
“Air high fives!” said Nelson “Air high fives from six feet away.”
But Nelson said the church will only allow 500 people to worship in the 9 and 11 a.m. services.
Home sweet home
“These first few Sundays are family services,” said Nelson. “We’re not offering nursery, or children’s ministry, or youth ministry right now.”
The Rock will keep track of visitors by asking them to pre-register online. Until now, it was never required to hear the pastor preach.
“We’ve been reserving seats,” said Nelson. “We have an online reservation and right now we’ve filled up both of those services at 50 percent capacity.”
Willowbrook Baptist Church
Another Huntsville church has thousands of congregants too. Willowbrook Baptist Church is also asking its members to register for services. The 8 a.m. will be a mask-only service. The others are optional.
“Remember, it will be safe, sanitized, socially distant, and we’re doing everything we can to keep you safe. Look, look hand sanitizers are everywhere.” said Willowbrook Baptist Church Lead Pastor Mark McClelland in a Facebook video.
But at both churches — only so many will be allowed to walk in to each service.
As far as me and my house, we will serve the Lord
“Everyone who’s able to come in for those two services will feel like it’s just a good day to be home,” said the Rock Family Worship Center Lead Pastor Rusty Nelson.
And a good day it will be.
If you are not able to make it to your house of worship due to overflow, the Rock Family Worship Center and Willowbrook Baptist Church will continue to live stream their services. You can tune in from the comfort of your own home.