My dear clergy and wardens,
In my recent request that public services be avoided for the time being, I neglected to consider the matter of funerals. So let me clarify: the dead must be commended to God with dignity and with consideration for those who grieve, especially family members. I ask that funeral services be conducted with attention to all necessary precautions, including the observance of social distance, no eating or drinking together, and no administration of Holy Communion, until further notice. Officiating clergy should take special care to wash hands frequently and make generous use of hand sanitizers. All surfaces in the place of worship should be thoroughly cleaned before and after the service, whether it is a church or a funeral home.
God willing, this pandemic will eventually pass, at which time there will be ample opportunity for follow-up memorial services attended by many more people.
It saddens me to call for these restrictions, but, as has become abundantly clear to me, we must do everything we can to slow the spread of COVID-19. Please know how grateful I am for your courageous, faithful and conscientious ministry.
(The Rt. Rev.) Thomas E.Breidenthal, D.Phil.