Covid Update for Phila. Churches (11/20/20)

Friday, November 20th, 2020

Seal of the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ (Colossians 4:2-3)


My Siblings in Christ,

This morning, I received the latest information regarding the spread of the Coronavirus in Philadelphia. Thus, I am taking the step to follow the maximum occupancy limits requested by city government.  Effective today, all churches in Philadelphia, if they choose to hold in-person services, will be limited to the maximum occupancy of 5%.  We have reiterated over these last months that we will make necessary adjustments and changes to protect all those in our churches; this is one such instance. 

Please make whatever adjustments may be necessary to ensure that your worship services are in compliance with the occupancy limits. Please note, the occupancy limit is the only thing that has changed. All other aspects of the guidance I issued in my most recent letter still apply both in Philadelphia and in the rest of the diocese. I must reiterate that the safest option is to be patient, suspend services and take care of yourselves and one another.

If you have questions or need assistance please contact Canon Shawn Wamsley at or Canon Kirk Berlenbach at

We press onward with resilience, prayer and hope. May our Lord bless you and keep you.


Your Sibling In Christ,

Bishop signature

The Rt. Rev. Daniel G. P. Gutiérrez

XVI Bishop of The Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania