Coping and Living During a Pandemic

Pastoral Care

If you or someone you know is sick, hospitalized, recovering, grieving, feeling lonely or lost, need a hand meeting your basic needs, or are celebrating a joyous occasion, UUCB is here for you. Please email us at In case of a pastoral emergency, Rev. Michelle Collins is always available for pastoral needs. You may call or text her at 301-675-5314 or email her directly at

When Will the Church Re-Open?

An Opening Task Force has worked diligently to develop guidelines for safely returning to in-person worship, meetings, and other activities. Here is their message from early June; see the Beacon and The Week Ahead (under News) for updates.

As June begins, UUCB remains in Reopening Phase 2. Click here for a detailed reopening plan. We have begun to schedule and enjoy outdoor gatherings, meetings and work parties, but are still not meeting indoors. While we hope that Contra Costa and Alameda Counties will move into the state’s less restrictive Yellow Tier sometime this month, at press time, both counties clearly would remain in the Orange Tier for the rest of May. (Counties must meet the requirements to move to a less restrictive Tier for two weeks before the state approves their move; neither county had met the requirements to move to a less restrictive Tier at all by May 17.) When our county does move into the Yellow Tier, the Opening Task Force will review our readiness for UUCB Reopening Phase 3, which will allow for small group meetings indoors, with full observance of safety protocols.

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has considered the CDC’s new (May) guidelines regarding masking, and announced on May 17 that “California will keep its existing guidance around masks in place until June 15 when California aims to fully reopen the economy.” We also note that  “In indoor settings outside of one’s home … face coverings continue to be required regardless of vaccination status.” When this mid-June opening of the California economy was announced in April, the CDPH cautioned that “Common-sense health measures such as masking will remain across the state.” At UUCB we ask everyone in our community, regardless of vaccination status, to observe the safety protocols that do so much to prevent the spread of disease:  wear a mask, maintain physical distancing, and stay home if you or others in your household are ill. Face masks are required for outdoor gatherings at UUCB. We look forward to learning the new state guidelines in mid-June, and to responding as appropriate to our community.

We look forward to safely being together on June 6. Please continue to share any questions or observations with the OTF at

The UUCB Opening Task Force (OTF) assists UUCB staff and leadership in planning and implementing the phased reopening of UUCB by engaging scientific and expert input and member concerns, wants, and preferences. The Task Force is guided in its effort by the following principles:

  1. The common good and the health and welfare of our congregants is foremost in our deliberations.
  2. We commit to listen deeply to congregants.
  3. Draft reopening plans will be shared for review and comment with key UUCB entities, e.g., Program Council, Coordinating Team, Buildings and Grounds, Family Ministry, Music, Social Justice, Pastoral Care.
  4. Reopening will be consistent with congregational risk levels and tolerance and based on science based health indicators set by the county, state, and WHO.
  5. The congregation will be kept informed of reopening efforts and have the opportunity to share concerns and suggestions.

Poll summary identifying congregation concerns, needs, and preferences for reopening 


OTF Members: Patrick Cullinane (Chair), Sheldon Jones, Greg Lemieux, Lisa Maynard, Catherine Boyle, Tess O’Riva, and Rev. Michelle Collins. All Task Force members welcome your communications to