How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

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DarkJedi
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Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by DarkJedi » 23 May 2020, 17:35

We are not in phase 1 of reopening church here yet, but we have been given the go ahead to start taking the sacrament to those without a priesthood holder in the home. The rules are that the people being visited should provide the bread and water, the brethren must wear masks, the visit is to be very short (just the ordinance, no extra visiting), either two men or a married couple may visit for the sacrament to a single sister, and YM may only participate with parental permission (and an adult must be one of the priesthood holders). None of my ministering families or people who live nearby are in this situation so I'm off the hook. There are several older single/widowed sisters in our ward for whom I'm sure this will be welcome, however.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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Minyan Man
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Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by Minyan Man » 23 May 2020, 17:51

Is there anyone on this sight who has church scheduled in your ward or branch tomorrow?

I would love to hear your experience if possible. I personally believe that the leadership & members will take
it slow. If we go back & the infection rate goes up again, we will close down quickly. That's probably in the
guidelines somewhere.

I believe in being abundantly cautious. If the leadership can't or won't, I will.

TinSoldier
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Joined: 25 Jan 2020, 01:51

Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by TinSoldier » 24 May 2020, 23:10

One thing I hope changes, at least this is the way things are done locally, is that when the building is cleaned they'll use disinfectant instead of plain water to clean things like door handles and such.

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DarkJedi
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Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by DarkJedi » 26 May 2020, 09:35

TinSoldier wrote:
24 May 2020, 23:10
One thing I hope changes, at least this is the way things are done locally, is that when the building is cleaned they'll use disinfectant instead of plain water to clean things like door handles and such.
I don't participate in building cleaning but would not be surprised that if the "cleaning" occurs at all it is done without any actual cleanser in many cases, even though cleanser is available in the closet. I treat the restroom at church the same as I do the Walmart restroom - I don't touch handles, etc. after I've washed my hands. I would hope that as a result of the pandemic there might be more detailed instructions on what constitutes cleaning. That said, the latest I have seen from the CDC is that almost all spread of COVID has been person to person (mostly droplets) and people are very unlikely to get it from surfaces or objects. (CDC link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nc ... 19-Spreads)
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

Roy
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Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by Roy » 26 May 2020, 11:15

In my area prior to COVID the deacons were not permitted to assist in breaking the bread or filling the water cups because that is part of "preparing" the sacrament. I therefore found it interesting that our current instructions (that I was informed of) when taking the sacrament to a widow's home is the following: The widow prepares her own bread and water. Priesthood holders enter home and stand at least 6 feet away from the widow and the sacrament. Priesthood holders say prayer. Priesthood holders leave. I suppose in some situations the priesthood holders could perform the prayer from outside the residence but it seems that would be discouraged.

To me it is an interesting example of something that we thought was a rule because "only priests and above have the proper priesthood authority to prepare the sacrament" changing to "maybe priesthood is not strictly required to break the bread after all."

I feel that Jesus used the necessities of exigent circumstances to demonstrate the pliability of religious rules.
I was talking to a friend from another area that said in their area the widows and such are to prepare the sacrament within their home and priesthood brethren will visit the home and say the blessing upon the bread and water from outside the home.

My friend found it interesting that the priesthood brethren are instructed not to kneel during the prayers even though in previous times there had been some discussion about the proper way to kneel (not on one knee) for the blessing of the sacrament.

This led me to do some google searching on the evolution of the LDS sacrament and I found this delightful article discussing how we used to drink the sacrament from a shared goblet. There were some that defended the practice for the scriptural precedent and for symbolic reasons. There were also some that thought the priesthood blessing on the water was enough to make it safe. The LDS church had been moving to individual cups before the pandemic of 1918 but that certainly hastened the transition. It makes me hopeful that we might see similar common sense changes after this current pandemic subsides.

https://history.churchofjesuschrist.org ... 8?lang=eng
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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DarkJedi
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Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by DarkJedi » 27 May 2020, 10:03

Thanks for sharing Roy, I found the article (and references) interesting. There are other churches that still use communal cups, and it appears Catholicism in particular has had a hard time letting go of that tradition. There are alternatives for Catholics, including dipping the "bread" (Host) in the wine, but that symbolism and scriptural reference to the way Jesus did it holds many to the practice (and the alcohol in the wine does not prevent any potential infections). I am glad our church, and many Protestants, abandoned the practice 100 or more years ago - I can imagine the very orthodox and believing members thinking there is no other way to do it were we to still have communal cups. That brings up another interesting point regarding your post. D&C does specify kneeling when administering the sacrament. I don't disbelieve your friend as we were given similar instructions last week in re-allowing the sacrament to be brought to those with no priesthood in the home (although kneeling was not mentioned). When I do the sacrament at home I don't kneel. It does make me wonder what is absolutely essential in the sacrament ordinance? Is breaking the bread part of the ordinance? Does not kneeling nullify it? How exact do the prayers need to be and how many times are too many to redo it without it being a huge distraction? I don't see kneeling, pre-broken bread or exactness of wording changing in the near future post-COVID but the handbook was slightly tweaked regarding dress/appearance so it could happen.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

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DarkJedi
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Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by DarkJedi » 04 Jun 2020, 10:11

I'm not thinking this is going to be a permanent change, but it was announced today that October GC is going to follow the same format as April and be broadcast only. I know the conference center is a big deal and there's a lot of money in it - but it looks like we could have lived without it. Very honestly for me GC this time was no different than any other GC because I sat home and watched on my TV just as I have for the past nearly 20 years. FWIW, I have never been to a live session of GC in the tabernacle or conference center. I was once at a Music and the Spoken Word live broadcast in the conference center.

I also think it's early to be making an announcement like this, but the church does seem to be ahead of the curve in its response thus far so I'm fine with it. Maybe they're expecting a possible resurgence or second wave by that time or don't want to be responsible for initiating either of those. Text of the announcement I got:
Dear Brothers and Sisters:

While some areas of the world continue to experience the effects of a serious pandemic, other areas do not. As a worldwide organization, we have an obligation to be good citizens and to act with caution as it relates to such a unique setting as general conference, which traditionally brings thousands of visitors to Salt Lake City from around the globe.

Because of our concern for the health and safety of others, we have decided that the October 2020 general conference will follow the same pattern as the conference held in April of this year. The general sessions will be broadcast as usual. However, the general sessions will not be open to the public.

Additional details about general conference, scheduled for October 3 and 4, 2020, will be shared as they are finalized.

We pray that the Lord's choicest blessings will attend you.

Sincerely yours,

The First Presidency
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

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Cadence
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Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by Cadence » 05 Jun 2020, 06:35

Short of a vaccine it seems we are just delaying the inevitable. Eventually it will run its course. It may be ugly but there is no good answer. Shutting everything down has a host of issues every bit as dangerous. I think the church is correct open with caution


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Faith, as well intentioned as it may be, must be built on facts, not fiction--faith in fiction is a damnable false hope. Thomas A. Edison

“The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it.” Neil deGrasse Tyson

grobert93
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Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by grobert93 » 05 Jun 2020, 07:24

DarkJedi wrote:
04 Jun 2020, 10:11
I'm not thinking this is going to be a permanent change, but it was announced today that October GC is going to follow the same format as April and be broadcast only. I know the conference center is a big deal and there's a lot of money in it - but it looks like we could have lived without it. Very honestly for me GC this time was no different than any other GC because I sat home and watched on my TV just as I have for the past nearly 20 years. FWIW, I have never been to a live session of GC in the tabernacle or conference center. I was once at a Music and the Spoken Word live broadcast in the conference center.

I also think it's early to be making an announcement like this, but the church does seem to be ahead of the curve in its response thus far so I'm fine with it. Maybe they're expecting a possible resurgence or second wave by that time or don't want to be responsible for initiating either of those. Text of the announcement I got:
Dear Brothers and Sisters:

While some areas of the world continue to experience the effects of a serious pandemic, other areas do not. As a worldwide organization, we have an obligation to be good citizens and to act with caution as it relates to such a unique setting as general conference, which traditionally brings thousands of visitors to Salt Lake City from around the globe.

Because of our concern for the health and safety of others, we have decided that the October 2020 general conference will follow the same pattern as the conference held in April of this year. The general sessions will be broadcast as usual. However, the general sessions will not be open to the public.

Additional details about general conference, scheduled for October 3 and 4, 2020, will be shared as they are finalized.

We pray that the Lord's choicest blessings will attend you.

Sincerely yours,

The First Presidency
I applaud the church this time. After plenty of bad press for various reasons this year so far, they have chosen to take no chances this fall. It's for the best for everyone to avoid socializing when the second wave hits. Why am I convinced its coming? Because we have decided the virus doesn't exist as a nation (even before the protests), but science doesn't follow politics. I do fear for missionaries who are either unaware of the situation or who are too faithful for their own good and insist on serving the Lord regardless of health and safety concerns. Hopefully the church can step up on their a-game of "prophecy" and "revelation" this time in October and address issues directly, provide correct an helpful advice concerning how to stay safe. Or we will be reminded of the earthquake in SLC a few months ago and they will insist we continue to pay tithing to repair the temple. I've lost my benefit of the doubt with the church at this point so nothing "surprise" me anymore. Nelson will probably blame the pandemic and protesting on us still using "mormon" and announce a new logo for something.

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DarkJedi
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Re: How will the Church change in light of the Covid Virus?

Post by DarkJedi » 05 Jun 2020, 07:39

Cadence wrote:
05 Jun 2020, 06:35
Short of a vaccine it seems we are just delaying the inevitable. Eventually it will run its course. It may be ugly but there is no good answer. Shutting everything down has a host of issues every bit as dangerous. I think the church is correct open with caution


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
We have to be careful with politics here, but Trump was roundly criticized by the media a few weeks back for saying we'd have a vaccine by the end of the year (please don't read into this that I'm a Trump fan, for I am not, but I am also not a fan of media bias on either side). However, Dr. Fauci said as much earlier this week as well and he is seen as a credible messenger. Dr. Fauci has also been talking about schools reopening. So I agree, I think from the church point of view caution and taking it slow is better especially considering there are tons of older vulnerable people who regularly attend (including essentially all of the Q15). If there is a vaccine between October and April GC I expect a return to things pretty much the way they were before March of this year, even though I would still hold out some hope for change of things we've discovered we can do without.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

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