When the heat rolls into town, between 150 to 200 people typically fill a community room at the church to cool down. But with COVID-19, that's not an option.
"Basically everything has changed. Except we have always provided food and water for our communities through the respite program. But in the past we’ve let people in the building," explained Pastor Sarah Stadler.
She said they'd even bring in resources to help people sign up for assistance, like food stamps and health care. They'd typically offer yoga sessions and vaccines.
"At the current time, we are not able to do that," Stadler said.
She says that many in the community the church serves have suppressed immune systems.
"We know that COVID-19 reeks havoc on people who have underlying health conditions as well as those who are elderly in particular ... this virus would be particularly devastating in our community," she explained.
Grace Lutheran Church will still be providing services everyday like food and cold water.
"The food and water that we have available is available outside. We can’t let people into the building unfortunately. We can’t have people using restrooms. It would just be so many different people and would require cleaning on a level that we’re not able to provide and we don’t want to further put in danger someone’s health," Stadler said.
For more information on the church's services, visit http://www.graceinthecity.com/
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