March 20, 2020
As you know, the governors of New York and Pennsylvania have strengthened restrictions on work, meetings and travel within the last two days in an effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. The restrictions in the two states differ in some respects, but the necessity of curbing our movements and gatherings on behalf of the common good is regrettably but abundantly clear.
Effective tomorrow evening, church buildings in both our dioceses should be closed except for essential feeding programs. If you wish to record or livestream liturgies, please do so from home. If you ordinarily provide space for recovery groups, please make it clear that participants can join such meetings online or by telephone. Please do not travel to your church building unless there is an emergency.
If you need anything that is currently in one of our churches, please retrieve it by the end of the day tomorrow. And please remember, that while the governors may lift or extend their restrictions, their actions will not change the fact that we will not be observing Holy Week or celebrating Easter in our church buildings.
Please continue your ministries by telephone and over the internet. As exiles go, I believe this will be a brief one, and one in which we retain the capacity to offer loving service to the Body of Christ.