As COVID-19 cases continue spiking in California, Gov. Gavin Newsom has temporarily ordered a ban on singing, chanting, and group recitation in places of worship. In-person worship is still permitted, at reduced capacity and with face coverings, but the state’s public health department recommends that churches continue providing online services.
The order, issued on July 1, includes sanitation guidelines for church buildings, suggests shortened services, and temporarily prohibits items that move among congregants, such as offering plates. Churches aren’t the sole focus of the order, with venues such as bars, restaurants, theaters, and museums being shuttered for at least three weeks.