Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these siblings of mine, you did for me: Matthew 25:40
Dear Friends in Christ,
Last week, the CDC announced new guidance on mask use and social distancing for fully vaccinated individuals, and beginning Wednesday, May 19, New York State will adopt the new guidance. Until more New Yorkers are fully vaccinated, pre-K to 12 schools, public transit, homeless shelters, correctional facilities, nursing homes, and health care settings will continue to follow the State's existing COVID-19 health guidelines.
In line with New York State guidance, it is my official recommendation for our ordained ministers, lay leaders, and congregations to follow these updated guidelines. The new CDC guidelines apply to fully vaccinated individuals; if you have children under 12 in your congregation, or are unsure about the vaccination status of all your congregants, you should continue to follow the State’s existing COVID-19 health guidelines. I commend you all for working so hard as New Yorkers and as members of the church community to care for each other and take all the necessary precautions.
As I mentioned before, we are grateful for your ministry, compassion, thoughtful decision-making, and educated leadership during this crisis. We know how difficult it is to provide worship, pastoral care, and other enriching experiences at this time, with such physical limitations, but I can say with gratitude and joy that we are witnessing the work of God in each of our congregations and the work you do.
May we continue to be Church TOGETHER!
Yours in Christ,
Bishop Paul Egensteiner