COVID-19 Vaccination Directive from the Bishops of Maryland
This week, Bishops Sutton and Ihloff issued a pastoral directive for church staff, leaders, and volunteers regarding vaccination:
As leaders of faith in the Diocese of Maryland, our community of love, we have a moral obligation to protect ourselves, to protect others and to serve as trusted voices in our communities, setting an example of living as Christ’s hands and voice in the world. Therefore,
Effective immediately, we are directing that the following groups be fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 coronavirus by October 18 unless they have been advised by their primary care provider not to do so: all clergy serving in any capacity in the Diocese of Maryland, members of diocesan staff, church and ministry staffs, parochial preschool and school staffs, as well as volunteers whose ministries involve continuous in-person contact with others.
Here at All Saints’, we consider the following ministries to “involve continuous contact”: those who serve in worship, formation, pastoral and Eucharistic visits, outreach, vestry leadership roles, chairs/co-chairs of ministries, executive teams of Chapter groups, and Scouts and Charter organizations. This list is not exhaustive.
If you fall into one of these categories and are fully vaccinated or in the process of being vaccinated, fill out the form below as soon as possible. If you are unclear of whether your ministry applies, and do not plan to be vaccinated, reach out to our clergy to discuss next steps and options.
As followers of Christ, we have been charged with bringing his love into the world. Vaccinating against a devastating and potentially deadly disease, which has already killed over 4.5 million people worldwide, is a meaningful and tangible way to express that love. We expect all our leaders, and encourage all our members, to take this important step if they have not already.
To learn more about this directive, including more detail and an FAQ, read the full release.
Loving God, we thank you for calling us to be ambassadors of your love for all. Open our hearts, day by day, to see and serve those needs that we are able to meet in our communities and neighborhoods. Give us wisdom to discern and support those policies and leaders that can best serve your dream of wholeness for your whole Creation. Deliver us from the temptations of cynicism and despair, and give us courage to live always in hope, however countercultural that may sometimes seem. We pray in the name of our crucified and risen Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen.