Yesterday, Monday, June 7, the Ontario Government announced that it will ease restrictions for weddings, funerals and religious services across the province. These changes come into effect on Friday, June 11th.
New provincial guidelines will allow for communities of faith to hold indoor worship gatherings for up to 15 percent of total capacity, or outdoors up to a capacity where all participants are able to maintain 2 metres of distancing.
Some parts of our Region (Timmins, in particular) will remain in lockdown and we keep them in our thoughts and prayers during their outbreak.
Beyond the letter of the law, as people of faith, we are called to uphold the whole community and contribute wherever we can to well-being and safety. After such a long time of being apart, we understand the desire to quickly come together for worship. Although the provincial government has eased restrictions for most places, it is important for communities of faith to assess for themselves whether they are able to offer in-person worship safely and have protocols in place to maintain capacity limits. For all church employees and volunteers, we continue to strongly encourage you to work remotely from home unless it is essential to be on site.
This is an encouraging development in what has been a long period of lockdown — and needing to be creative in how we worship. We are mindful of all the ways communities of faith have continued to be the church, even while not being able to gather.
We continue to hold all of you in our prayers.
Canadian Shield Regional Council Staff