Covid-19 Response

...Together Again!

Pandemic Task Force

The Church Council of the First Baptist Church of Rochester has appointed a Pandemic Task Force (PTF) to research and review the documentation from the New York State Forward Guidelines, the Center For Disease Control, and the work of other places of worship including but not limited to resources ABC-USA and ABC/RGR, then recommend to the Church Council a plan for reopening the church for worship and to a shared facility users in the summer of 2020.

The work of this Task Force including a comprehensive safety plan was developed for the church and for our facility users.  Equipment to thoroughly disinfect the facility was ordered, personnel were trained and appropriate signages, social distancing markers, sanitizers, and more were delivered and placed to comply with the appropriate guidelines.  The PTF periodically reviewed guidelines and adjust as needed to the ongoing changes that were taking place.  The latest guidelines to follow may be found below along with the full original Safety Plan and other Pandemic related documents.  If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the church office.

Latest Update of March 17, 2022…

The Pandemic Task Force (PTF) met and modified the FBCR PANDEMIC GUIDELINES based on current facility needs, various guidelines including those from the CDC.  Since variants and outbreaks are very fluid and can change swiftly, we are in the process of developing criteria similar to the CDC utilizing green, yellow, and red identifiers.  Above is the latest guideline. 

The church is currently operating under a green zone and what we are calling “CDC plus” guidelines.  At this time we highly recommend individuals continue to wear masks unless they can ensure they will be able to maintain a 6′ distance.

Each group may submit their own criteria to the church office for review by the PTF but must maintain at least the minimum requirements we have stated in our guidelines.

Facility Use  (Shared Facility User Groups)

FBCR’s Pandemic Task Force (PTF) has developed a reopening plan that is in accordance with NYS Forward mandatory and recommended guidelines.  In June of 2021, these guidelines were updated and greatly reduced.  The PTF has put together new updated guidelines to follow.  There is still a required safety plan to be established following these new guidelines.  The church office can answer questions or assist with that plan as needed.

The safe number of individuals which are allowed in a room is based on group size and either vaccinated percentages of the NYS or those of the group if vaccination status was requested by the group.  Largest anticipated group numbers should be submitted to the church office.  Determination of capacity must ensure that an appropriate number of seats must be available with 6 feet of distance for those who are unvaccinated.

Requirements are listed above in the FBCR Updated Pandemic Guidelines  6/16/21 along with an updated proof of insurance certificate, naming the First Baptist Church and specifying any pandemic related coverage.  If you plan to have food at your event a plan for safe dispensing or serving of the food is also required.

Need help? Please contact the church office and ask for Janet Richardson.

Congregational Church Information


FBCR Diaspora Times

To keep you informed and up-to-date without overwhelming your emails, the FBCR Diaspora Times has been created.  You may wish to check it regularly for new and up-to-date information when they become available.  For quick access to to the COVID-19 Response tab (dropdown) in the navigation bar at the top of the website page.


We worship is being held on campus in the form of hybrid worship utilizing both on-campus and Zoom options.  On-campus seating is limited but can accommodate a good number of individuals.  Recommendation is to arrive early for proper seating as every other pew is not accessible to maintain appropriate social distancing.

Pastoral Support

Pastor Brent and Pastor Benjamin are available! Leave a message for either of them at the office (585)244-2468 or either of them at their office emails (Pastor Brent) (Pastor Benjamin). For time-sensitive pastoral needs contact him using the contact information in the church directory.

Both will reserve in person meetings for emergent pastoral needs.

Congregational Care

Many among our congregation have already reached out to those among us and around who may be particularly vulnerable during this time. Please continue to check on and care for one another. Pastor Brent, the Congregational Care Team and our Fellowship Committee are working together to ensure support this natural response and assist in sustaining this care. If you know of someone with particular needs, please reach out pastor Brent or a member of the team to let us know. If you would like to support the work of the Congregational Care Team or Fellowship Committee, please volunteer to help us stay in touch with the congregation.

Community Response

Our Missions Committee and others within the congregation are assessing the needs of our partner organizations and the community around the church. Efforts to help will be organized as more information becomes available. If you know of needs or wish to volunteer, please let us know.

Other Church Events

All other church events will begin to resume.  Check the church calendar for those things which are taking place.

Office Business

Our staff will be working from home as much as possible, but you may still reach us at our individual email address or by leaving a message on the church phone @ (585)244-2468. We will check messages frequently and respond promptly.