Many local Quaker communities are in the midst of a discernment process as to whether, when and to what extent to resume meeting in person for worship or other activities. A multitude of resources has been shared, and we have included a short list of resources at the end of this message.
Most importantly, make sure you are following guidelines issued by your state government and the Centers for Disease Control. Links to the appropriate websites are also at the end of this message.
If your meeting community is considering outdoor meeting for worship, one resource to consult is included at the end of this message: Guidance for Outdoor Worship by Britain Yearly Meeting.
Following the guidelines of the City of Philadelphia for Religious Institutions we highly recommend that meetings remain closed at this stage of the pandemic. While in some places gatherings of under 25 people are no longer prohibited, the overwhelming consensus is that houses of worship should maintain an abundance of caution. Despite these cautions, if meetings still decide to re-open, please closely scrutinize all the guidance listed in this article.
Some highlights are:
- Wear masks at all times; make masks available to members who may not have them.
- Screen everyone for symptoms and isolate anyone exhibiting any symptoms.
- Use signage to encourage individuals/family groups to remain 6 feet from one another.
- Stay under the 25-person limit at all times.
- Wash hands frequently.
- Wipe down high-touch surfaces at least once every 4 hours.
- Stay educated and up-to-date on all the latest guidance. The resources and recommendations included in this article could become out-of-date at any point.
- Do not serve any food or drink.
Re-Opening Guidance by CDC and States
Other Re-Opening Guidance for Houses of Worship
- Guidance for Religious Institutions by the City of Philadelphia
- Guidance for Possibly Reopening by Friends General Conference
- Guidance for Outdoor Worship by Britain Yearly Meeting
- Guidance for Blended Physical and Online Worship by Britain Yearly Meeting
- Returning to Public Worship by the Presbyterian Church