Dear Good Shepherd Church,
During the last week of April, as this newsletter was going to press, the Louisiana COVID-19 mask mandate was drastically modified by Governor John Bel Edwards. Within hours of Governor Edwards’ directives being issued, Jefferson Parish President Cynthia Lee Sheng also drastically modified local mandates.
Here’s where we stand in Jefferson Parish:
At this time, there are no state or local mandates on numbers or mask requirements for venues such as Good Shepherd Church. As you are out and about in Jefferson Parish, you may notice many businesses no longer requiring masks and no longer imposing capacity limits. Other businesses may have a different approach and require masks of their customers and/or continue to utilize capacity restrictions. As it currently stands, individual businesses continue to maintain the right to require masks and self-impose capacity limitations regardless of the loosening of restrictions by government.
Here’s where we stand as Good Shepherd Church Parish:
As of this writing, Good Shepherd Church continues to have our pews roped off in a manner consistent with 50% capacity and this will continue for the coming days. Likewise, we will continue to require masks at church.
I will address the issue of masks and capacity with our Church Council in early May. While we all look forward to lifting these restrictions and returning to a sense of normalcy, it is important that we do so while weighing multi-faceted approaches to both the safety and comfort of our parishioners.
Every week I hear from more and more members who are getting a first or second vaccination. I see the relief in the eyes of those who have been inoculated. I share in that sense of relief knowing that I and my immediate family feel protected by having chosen to receive the vaccine.
For the moment, I ask for your patience and prayers on this issue. Until I meet with our Council, I ask that you please continue to bring your mask with you to church and pray that we continue to make good, strong progress toward herd immunity from the COVID-19 pandemic.
If you have any questions or concerns about this issue, please do not hesitate to speak to me.
In Service to Christ and His Church,
Fr. Randall Graf+