Respectfully, I disagree.
Last week I stated publicly my support for bishops who, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, decide “for a designated period of time . . . to cancel in-person gatherings for public worship.” I write now concerning the need to suspend in-person gatherings for public worship, in most contexts, during the sacred time of Holy Week and Easter Day. Because this is a global health crisis, the principles in this letter apply throughout The Episcopal Church, including beyond the United States.
On March 15th the Centers for Disease Control recommended the suspension of public gatherings in the U.S. of more than 50 people for the next 8 weeks. On March 16th officials of the federal government asked persons in the U.S. to “avoid gatherings of more than 10 people” for the next 15 days. It is reasonable to assume that some form of recommendations restricting public gatherings will continue for some time.
Considering this changing landscape, I believe that suspension of in-person public worship is generally the most prudent course of action at this time, even during Holy Week and on Easter Day.
It is important to emphasize that suspension of in-person gatherings is not a suspension of worship. I very much encourage and support online worship.
Says Presiding Bishop Michael B. Curry, current highest leader of The Episcopal Church here.
That's like, 1.5-1.8 million congregants he's speaking to.
As a person of Chinese descent in America during this time, I know a thing or two about sweeping generalizations. They're generally not favorable. Or true. Or helpful.