Since the early days of the pandemic, the ELCA has been a partner in the Ecumenical Consultation on Protocols for Worship, Fellowship, and Sacraments, publishing general and seasonal guidance for safe worship practices.

Recently, the consultation met once again to approve a comprehensive update to the guidance originally published in the summer of 2020, incorporating the latest CDC guidance and other interim guidance previously issued by the consultation.

The consultation included an ecumenical group of theologians, scientists, physicians, pastors, bishops, and practitioners from at least seven church bodies.

Direct link to Care-Filled Worship and Sacramental Life in a Lingering Pandemic

A link to this resource has been added to

  • ELCA resource: Resuming Care-Filled Worship and Sacramental Life During a Pandemic in English and Spanish
  • Guidelines for Coming Back Together as a Congregation English or Español.
  • Coming Back Together for Worship Resources that can be found here.
  • The letter from May 6, 2020 includes some updated recommendations for returning to in-person worship.

Louisiana and Texas Open Texas Guidelines

Sermons by the Presiding Bishop and the Bishop and Bishop’s Associates are available here. Please feel free to borrow from these sermons or use the videos, dropping them into your livestream. We also offer for use our 50/40/10 Sermon Series.

If you are a pastor or deacon and test positive for coronavirus, please notify the synod office as soon as possible. We need to know, and we may be able to help you get pastoral coverage.

Think about finances with your leaders. Promote online giving (for example, check out Tithely) or sending tithes and offerings in by mail. Have a frank conversation about finances with your members. Churches have salaries, mortgages, utilities and ministries to maintain. Think about best financial practices, including who will process checks that arrive by mail, always in groups of two or more. We recommend that you have an offering time in your online services us the time to share impact stories of your congregation’s essential ministries.

As it is, there are many parts, but only one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you.”

~ 1 Corinthians 12:20-22a