PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) – For many churchgoers in Oregon, it's been more than a year since they were able to attend a Sunday church service in person.
West Side: A Jesus Church in Portland welcomed its congregation back for the first time since the COVID-19 Pandemic started.
"We're super excited," Eric Frazier said. "I mean, it's been a long time since we've been able to be a part of our community and our church community, and so we're really excited to just get back and be with our friends and family."
He and his family are back in person for the first time in more than a year and said they're all excited to be in person again.
Annabelle Thome and her mom Angel said they haven't been to church in person since the Pandemic started. They're feeling more hopeful this year.
"We didn't go to service last year. We just needed to stay home, and so yeah, it was kind of a bummer this year we didn't get to get together with family," Angel said.
Annabelle said she's excited that things seem to be getting back to normal.
"Like we'd come to a big church service on Easter, and it was just really weird being at home last year, but yeah, this year feels great we were so excited to come," she said.
The church usually can hold about 1,000 people but has reduced its capacity to about 300-350 because of health and safety protocols. Masks are also required, and the chairs are spaced out for social distancing. The church requires that people make reservations online to come in person.