HPU Weekly Chapel – Fall 2020

Weekly Chapel at HPU is excited for the return of students. We are determined to create inspiring, loving, and thought-provoking worship gatherings. We are equally determined that these gatherings should be as safe as possible during the Covid-19 Pandemic.
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To that end, while HPU Weekly Chapel will continue to gather at 5:30 pm every Wednesday, we will be doing so through a variety of ways. The HPU Chapel Community (Students, Faculty, Staff, Alumni, Families, and others—we’re a big crew!) will continue to have the possibility of watching and participating in weekly chapel through our virtual community, and students will also have the option of joining together in small, in-person “Breakout Groups” (small groups).

How will a Breakout Group work? At various times and places around campus on Wednesday evenings there will be small gatherings with social distancing and masking to allow people to join in Weekly Chapel together, in-person and in a safe way. The weekly worship will be streamed, and the Breakout Group will be able to watch, participate, and discuss together. To continue the tradition of providing a meal on Wednesday, individual boxed meals will be provided at each location. However, these are meals-to-go and should be be eaten later. Each location will allow for a limited number for safety.

How to Participate:

  • To join a Chapel Breakout group:
    • Go to www.highpoint.edu/religiouslife/chapelworship
    • Choose from a Breakout Group location.
      • The locations will be posted and available for RSVP on the Thursday prior to the next Wednesday’s gathering.
      • A Board of Steward member or other HPU Chapel leader will welcome you, and you can join in worship, fellowship, discussion, and study together.
      • You may request a boxed meal-to-go also You’ll be able to provide your meal preference when RSVPing (request for meal must be received by noon on Tuesday before Chapel).
  • To join Online:  Two options:

Why are we doing it this way?

We are excited to be back together, but we need to take proper precautions to ensure the safety of our worshipping community. Some might ask, “if classes are gathering face-to-face in larger numbers, why can’t we do the same for weekly chapel?” Weekly chapel is different from a classroom gathering. The expectations of in-person worship include singing together, embracing one another, meditative practice that include deep breathing, and participating in a message which is different from a lecture. The possibility of spreading the virus is greater in a worship gathering than a classroom gathering. Unfortunately, the ways of participation: singing, embracing, deep breathing, call and response are all means of increased risk for spreading the virus. Recent news reports have highlighted this fact. Moreover, we’ve seen many places of worship who have opened have also been forced to close again, even after taking preventative measures.

We are indeed one body. We belong to one another, seek to inspire one another to new heights of faithfulness and righteousness. We are our brothers’ and sisters’ keepers, and we will practice that mission in safe ways this year. Thank you for being part of this community and committing to be together in these creative ways.

With Love,

Rev. Preston Davis
Minister to the University

Other FAQs:

  1. What about the Chapel Courses (Rel-1019, 1020, and 1021).
    1. Rel-1019 and Rel-1020 will be offered virtually and in-person formats. Students may take these courses–which deepen their knowledge about Christian worship and spiritual formation–by attending virtually or through one of the Breakout groups. Students will also complete other assignments included in syllabus.
  2. What about HPU Sunday – how will it gather? 
    1. HPU Sunday will gather this fall outside at 11 am on Sunday as weather permits. All those gathered will abide by masking and social distancing mandates, even those leading.
    2. When unable to gather outside, HPU Sunday intends to gather through Webex (https://hpu.webex.com/meet/pdavis).Follow on Instagram to stay informed: instagram.com/hpusunday
  3. What about other religious life gatherings, including Interfaith United, Hillel, and other campus ministries?