PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD)– For nearly three months, churches across the country and Illinois have been closed due to COVID-19.
On Sunday, churches welcomed guests through their doors for the first time since early March. Sunday morning, attendees of Riverside Community Church gathered together and taking precautions to not spread disease.
The church is cleaning seats and spacing people apart. People are asked to sit every-other row and to leave three seats empty between them and the next person or group.
Lead pastor at Riverside, Michael Ritchason says he is happy to be back together in-person as a church, but cleanliness and health still remain a top priority.
“To see everybody back in that room together, the excitement, the people that just wanted to be together, to worship together for the first time in three months–we’ll look back on this Sunday as a turning point in the history of Riverside,” Ritchason said.
The church is still offering their services online to those who are still uncomfortable about gathering in public and staff are wearing masks for people’s safety.
Riverside offers services at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. but will not do their children’s service until further notice.