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We are grateful for the declining prevalence of COVID-19 infections and hospitalization in Utah County. Throughout the past 24 months, our goal has been to return to full church activity as much and as early as possible, while minimizing risk to members of our stake. We have recently received direction from the Area Presidency that we can make decisions regarding facial coverings and church meetings attendance based on our local situation. We have noted that the current risk in Utah County is at low risk (green) and with this low risk, individuals are no longer required to wear masks indoors. However we want everyone to feel comfortable in attending or participating in meetings. Bishop's will authorize the viewing of sacrament meetings to those not feeling well or desiring to view sacrament meetings remotely. We also recognize that some in our stake are in a high risk category or desire to use facial coverings for added protection. Please make sure all feel comfortable in doing so. Our goal is to have everyone feel welcome.
We have appreciated the manner and dignity, of those blessing and passing the sacrament, have shown. We encourage those who are blessing and passing the sacrament to continue to use good hygiene, wash their hands, and use hand sanitizer before passing the sacrament but they will no longer be required to wear facial coverings. Furthermore, we will no longer be required to sit every other row yet recognize that many may be more comfortable social distancing; let's help everyone feel welcome.
We desire that everyone continue take precautions to minimize the spread of illnesses and encourage those who are not feeling well to minimize interactions and physical contact with other members. Masks will still be required in temples, where so many who attend may be elderly or vulnerable populations and our desire is to keep temples open and to have as many as possible participate.
Thank you again for your faithfulness and care for others. We pray for the Lord to continue to bless those in our area.Sincerely,Santaquin East Stake Presidency