New Masking Policy for Indoor Events 
Dear Clergy, Vestries, and Bishop’s Committees, 
Grace and peace to you as we look for the coming of Christ this Advent season.  
With the spread of the Omicron variant, the state of California has now reinstituted indoor masking requirements for all public places. Our policy recently has been to leave the masking decision up to individual congregations. However, as we have in the past, we will follow state guidance. Therefore, we ask all our congregations to return to requiring masking during indoor worship and other events, until further notice. I believe that God calls us to care for our neighbor in tangible ways. We take this simple action of masking to protect the health of our neighbors, including those who are immunocompromised, in poor health, and children too young to be vaccinated. Maintaining masking indoors will help us all stay safer as we worship together.  

A clergy or lay person who is officiating at worship, reading a lesson, or preaching may remove her/his mask while speaking. We recommend that singers remain masked while singing, unless they can maintain a significant distance from other members of the congregation. Please do wear the mask while distributing communion or greeting each other after the service. In our diocese, we still have not allowed a return to drinking from the common cup; however, the priest or deacon may distribute communion in both kinds by intincting it and handing the intincted bread to the worshipers. Some congregations have found other safe ways to share both bread and wine with the congregation without drinking from the common cup, and those methods are also allowed.  

For other questions such as how to offer hospitality, I continue to allow congregations to make decisions about how best to keep your members safe. 
My prayers remain with you all during this pandemic. Let us pray for our church and our world, that the current surge in cases passes quickly and that we continue to feel safe in worshiping God together. 
Blessings and thanks for your ministries in Christ’s Church this Advent season. 
In Christ,

The Rt. Rev. Dr. Susan Brown Snook
shield color
God willing and the people consenting, The Right Reverend Doctor Susan Brown Snook, Bishop Diocesan of San Diego, will ordain Brian William Petersen to the Sacred Order of Deacons Saturday, December 18, 2021, 11:00 a.m. Your prayers and presence are requested. Clergy, please wear red stoles. Reception to follow the service. 

Due to COVID-19 cases in the region, vaccination and masking are required for attendance. If you have questions or concerns, please contact the Rev. Canon Gwynn Lynch.
The Episcopal Diocese of San Diego
2083 Sunset Cliffs Blvd., San Diego, CA 92107