Governor DeWine Issues Statewide Mask Order, Travel Warning: How this impacts SOS congregations
On July 22, Governor DeWine updated public health orders that include the requirement of face coverings in public, under certain circumstances, and travel advisories. Below is a link to the press release:
There's a lot in the order, and you should take time to read it and understand what is being required and what is not, but below is a summary of items in the orders that should be taken into consideration by congregations as they plan to meet in person, whether it is for worship, weddings, funerals, youth groups, Bible studies, etc. Please remember, we follow the State and Federal guidelines and orders not only because we are obligated, but because we are called to love our neighbor. Our willingness to show love sacrificially to our neighbors becomes a bright light in this dark world.
Applicable for gatherings and if rides are being provided for members to attend:
All individuals in Ohio must wear facial coverings in public at all times when:
- At an indoor location that is not a residence
- Outdoors, but unable to maintain six-foot social distance from people who are not household members
- Waiting for, riding, driving, or operating public transportation, such as a taxi, a car service, or a private car used for ride-sharing.
The order only requires those 10 years old or older to wear a mask. Additional exclusions include:
- Those with a medical condition or a disability or those communicating with someone with a disability;
- Those who are actively exercising or playing sports;
- Those who are officiants at religious services;
- Those who are actively involved in public safety; or
- Those who are actively eating or drinking.
Governor DeWine urged citizens to use extreme caution when considering attending or hosting an informal gathering.
"We are seeing serious exposures to the virus that are arising from everyday events like church services, small house parties, neighborhood get-togethers, children’s sleepovers, weddings, and even bridal showers," said Governor DeWine. "This virus is real, and we cannot let our guards down."
Applicable for members who have or will be traveling out of state. Please self-quarantine upon your return and wait the requested 2 weeks before participating in any in-person church activities.
Governor DeWine announced today a travel advisory for all individuals coming into Ohio from states reporting positive COVID-19 testing rates of 15 percent or higher.
Those traveling from one of the following states should self-quarantine for 14 days at home or in a hotel.
- South Carolina
The self-quarantine recommendation applies to those who live in Ohio and to people who are traveling into Ohio from any of these states.