Ministers of Jesus Christ
Church of The Lord Jesus Christ
Assemblies of The Apostolic Faith
Atlanta, Georgia - USA
Apostle Dennis G. Smith, Pastor and Spiritual Overseer

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Date: July 5, 2020

To all the Saints of God,

Grace and peace be unto all the Saints of God around the World.  As this Coronavirus Pandemic continues, we are continually reminding the Saints of God that we are obeying the magistrates and following the guideline of the health and governmental authorities for the safety of all people. 

Health authorities and governmental officials continue to strongly encourage people to wear face coverings in public and use social distancing, wash your hands, and get tested with or without symptoms.  In some places wearing face mask is mandatory in all indoor and outdoor public spaces. In-person services are not banned in most localities, but the gathering definition limits the number of people to 50 unless social distancing can be maintained and wearing mask. Due to notification from the health authorities of infection data for our local area during the holiday weekend, we canceled the in-person service for the holiday weekend scheduled for July 5, 2020.

     To accommodate all Saints, we are continuing with these scheduled in-person services wearing the recommended personal protective equipment:

On Today Sunday July 12, 2020 Sisters Department meeting and Church Services from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm.

On Sunday July 19, 2020 Brothers Department meeting and Church Services from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm.

On Sunday July 26, 2020 Youth Department meeting and Church Services from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm.

On Sunday August 2, 2020 Executive Board meetings and Church Services from 11:00 am – 2:00 pm. 

      All services will take place on Sundays only from 11am until 2pm to allow for proper cleaning and disinfecting all surfaces. No night services during the week due disinfection procedures. Baptism, pray and tarrying service, will continue each Sunday following all safety protocols including the use of personal protective equipment and body temperature checks.  

     As we obey the Magistrates, we have complete faith that God will continue to hear our prayers and provide a way for us through these uncertain times.

Romans 13:2-4 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

TITUS 3:1-2 Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work, To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men.  

This week’s encouraging words of growth focuses on:

The Modern Apostolic Church part I

       Most Amish Christians believe that their faith will be lost if they adopt modern technology.  This is why the Amish resist the modern world.  Most Amish Christians does not vote, drive a car, read a paper, listen to music, watch television, own a mobile phone or use a computer.   It is best for us to start here doing our message about the Modern Apostolic Church.  This is the time of the year when we are attending or promoting the Youth Conference and our response to the world around us.

     The Amish community, some in Pennsylvania is famed worldwide for their plain clothes, and use of horse-drawn buggies, and resistance to modernity and the temptations of technology on their children, their church and their traditional Christian world.   The rules of the church must be observed by every Amish member and cover many aspects of day-to-day living, including prohibitions or limitations on the use of power-line electricity, telephones, and automobiles, as well as regulations on clothing. Most Amish do not buy commercial insurance or participate in Social Security.   As present-day Anabaptists, Amish church members practice nonresistance and will not perform any type of military service. The Amish do not usually educate their children past the eighth grade, believing that the basic knowledge offered up to that point is sufficient to prepare one for the Amish lifestyle.

      At first glance, many of you who know of Bishop Johnson will notice the similarities in holiness teaching to the rules of the Amish people of Pennsylvania the location of the Headquarters Church of the organization that spread the Apostolic Message to many of us when we were children. Many of the early Pentecostals originated from the Holiness movement, and to this day many "classical Pentecostals" maintain much of Holiness doctrine and many of its devotional practices. The terms Pentecostal and Apostolic were once widely used by Holiness churches in connection with the consecrated lifestyle described in the New Testament teachings on Sanctification. This is where many of the traditions on Church rules, on dress codes, alcohol, television, bearing arms, appear to have originated from according to some Church historians. 

    We must understand and know many past traditions in order to properly address these issues now in the present and in the future should the Lord tarry. When you hear accusations of lowing the church standard and innuendo you most know whether or not you are dealing with doctrine of the one universal Church, or rules written to maintain cultural traditions of a local congregation, or false accusation.

     The modern Apostolic Church is a Oneness or Jesus Only movement within the Pentecostal Christian family of churches  with influences from Anabaptist, Methodist and African American Holiness Churches according to various historical accounts with a calling from God Almighty  to restore the Church to its Apostolic roots.  The term oneness expresses the teaching of the Biblical Apostles on the Godhead, which is popularly referred to as the "Oneness doctrine of God," as opposed to the teaching of three separate and distinct persons in the Godhead indicating three Gods which is false doctrine.  When we use the term modern, it expresses the Apostolic people facing the societal, social, economic, technological, medical, etc. issues in the day in which they live.  We have seen how some people label any technical change or perhaps most changes that they do not understand as sin.

      If you visit some of the Northern Holiness Churches, you will see people using horses and buggies as the normal form of transportation in what they purpose to be rejection of modern technology.  This may bring on the thought that buggies are still a form of technology.  But the modern Church has to remain teaching the truth about all things without doing it in a flaunting, boisterous way to be offensive to fellow believers in Jesus Christ.  We may refrain from doing certain things in the presence of our Brethren if a Saint is too weak to deal with the modern issue, but we must not teach it as sin or engage in hypocrisy.  These issues should not cause divisions within the Church if we approach them with Brotherly love.

ROMANS 14:1- 5 Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations.  For one believeth that he may eat all things: another, who is weak, eateth herbs.  Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him.  Who art thou that judgest another man’s servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be holden up: for God is able to make him stand.  One-man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind.

     This is the reason why the Apostolic Church has kept the Biblical teaching of the Apostles on the oneness of the Godhead.  Because no Apostle or Prophet taught a doctrine called three separate and distinct persons in the Godhead in the bible. The doctrine became widely supported by the Catholic Church about 300 years after the Biblical Apostles died according to historical scholars.

MARK 12:32 And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he:

EPHESIANS 4:4 - 6 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;  One Lord, one faith, one baptism,  One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

Oneness believers baptize in the name of Jesus Christ, rather than using the Trinitarian formula, of baptizing "in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit." Oneness believers state that Jesus is the one name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and so should perform all religious activities in that one name because this is what the Apostles commanded and did.

ACTS 2:37 - 38 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?  Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

ACTS 8:15 - 17 Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:  (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)  Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.

    When the Apostolic Church remains steadfast in the Apostle’s doctrine, grievous wolves arise to draw out members for themselves.   This is what Apostle Paul warn us about in tears.  And this is what Apostle Shelton dealt with in his day also.  We see this cycle repeating today and you must be fully aware that some will not submit to sound doctrine.  But will heap to themselves teachers having itching ears. Nevertheless, The Modern Apostolic Church must have a constant renewal of the original Apostolic message in the mist of modern technology and not change to conform to worldly lustful appeal.

ACTS 20:25 - 31 And now, behold, I know that ye all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more.  Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men.  For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.  Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.  For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.  Also, of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.

1Timothy 4:1- 5 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;  Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;  Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.  For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:   For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

2Timothy 4:3 - 4 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;  And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

     Whereas many so-called Christians believe that faith in Jesus Christ is the only essential element for salvation, the Modern Apostolic Church defines salvation as saved by grace through faith and includes the New Birth.   Salvation begin with belief in Jesus Christ and trust in his word or faith which leads to repentance, baptism by immersion in water in the name of Jesus Christ and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, with the sign following or evidence of speaking in other tongues as the Spirit of God gives you utterances.   Then leaving the principle of the doctrine and going on to perfection overcoming the world with inward and outward “holiness standards" in dress, grooming, and personal conduct professing Godliness, or devotion to God with good works.  This is usually referred to as becoming sanctified and holy.

1Timothy 2:8 - 10 I will therefore that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.  In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.

     Because the Modern Apostolic Church insist on teaching the holiness standards of the bible, some try to accuse us of legalism or rule writing when we are actually guiding the world in righteous living. But the Bible is Clear, without holiness no man shall see the lord. Hebrews 12:14–17.  When people repent or turn away from sin, they change their lifestyle to Holy Living that follows salvation.  "Holiness living”, proceeds from love rather than duty, and is motivated by the holy nature imparted by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  While the Christian life is indeed one of liberty from old testament ceremonial laws for atonement from sin, that liberty does not change the commandments on morality or the moral law which were taught by the Biblical Apostles of God and fulfilled in love. Christian liberty means to break free from sin's bondage, to obey and serve God, which in turn means to serve "righteousness " and to bear "fruit unto holiness."  So that the doctrine is Holiness, Modest Apparel, moderation and temperance in food and drink, patience, kindness and love in conduct and  is not opposed to modern technology but is opposed to sinful works of the flesh and inventors of evil things.

ROMANS 6:12 - 18 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.  Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.  What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.  Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey, whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?   But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.

ROMANS 13:8 - 10 Owe no man anything, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.  For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law.

     Sanctification in Christianity usually refers to a person becoming holy or separated from sin and the world(sinful pleasures and pagan conduct) and devoted to God.  The sanctification of the believer is the process by which a person frees himself from sin and becomes pure and holy after the new birth.  Progressive sanctification is the power from the indwelling Holy Spirit to overcome sin through grace and the decisions of the believer after the new birth.   Holiness cannot be manufactured by works of the flesh but must come as we submit to the leadership and control of the Holy Spirit.  Because we are saved and holy, we perform good works.  Good works are the sign of a sincere and grateful faith which can include praise and worship service and other service in the Church, evangelism, and charity toward all mankind which will be rewarded with the grace of God.  The following message from Apostle Shelton who is now deceased is a continual reminder of how the Church deals with the issues of holy living in a modern world written about 1987 during his lifetime.


By Bishop S. McDowell Shelton

We greet you once again from the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ during our annual Youth Conference held in Chicago, Illinois. It is our purpose and aim to bring you the one plan of salvation that Jesus Christ and the Apostles left on record for everyone to obey. 

     We are going to discuss, "What Is the Place of the Apostolic Church in Modern Society". The first question we would like to ask is do you know what the title means when we say what is the place of the "Apostolic" Church in modern society? What function does it serve? Immediately you would say that it serves the same function that it served when the Apostolic Church was started by Jesus Christ, and that is for the salvation of all humanity.

     This is true, but the ideas, method, and the modes of life of human beings are quite different today than they were before. People will say it is the same devil today as it was then. Yes, it is, but he is using new tactics.  This kind of discussion is more appropriate in a Youth Conference than it is in any other type of conference, because in an adult conference you have people whose minds are fixed in a groove. Surprisingly, the older people who attend the Conference are more flexible. It is usually not the fixed minded ones. It is the older people attending the Youth Conference whose minds are progressive and who enjoy themselves. 

     It is a very difficult thing when you have reached the age when you begin to look backwards rather than see yourself where you are and look towards the future. Let us face it. The Word remains the same, but the World is changing. How are you going to apply the same old-time doctrine to a modern world? This is what we are saying. It would not be as difficult to say to our grandmothers to wear a long dress, because the majority of the women wore them even longer than eight inches from the floor. They wore the long sleeve blouses also. Here Apostle Shelton deals with the issue of dress codes or rules to guide the women in professing Godliness.  The rule was not our doctrine but our guide. When some tried to enforce these rules, the issue of giving a person time to grow was sometimes overlooked perhaps by those who misunderstood the belief in progressive sanctification.

     It was not so much a problem then if someone said to teach the doctrine of a long skirt (people accepted the teaching of wearing a long skirt as doctrine) because most of the people (of that time period) would agree with you that any decent woman should wear a long dress. It was only the harlot, or the very common type woman who would have worn a short dress. If she wore a long dress, she wore the very vivid colors, but even then, when she walked across the street, she would lift up her dress very high or if she entertained, she would lift it. However, the average woman wore the plain sober colors and the problem of long dresses was not as pronounced as it is today.   Since the wearing of the miniskirt became fashionable, the wearing of the plain long skirt is more noticeable.

     There was not much against straightening hair. Here Apostle Shelton deals with the straightening of the hair.  Most Saints today use some form of hair straightening to make hair styles more manageable.  There was always some form of hair pride, but it is more pronounced now with human hair wigs, etc. and all the different methods of relaxers. This is the kind of thing the Apostolic Church faces. It faces new problems, and should the Lord tarry, the young people being guided by our generation and the generation before us, are going to have to face these new problems. We belong to a fortunate offspring for we are between the earlier generation of the Apostolic Revival in these days and the new ones just coming up. However, we understand the feelings of both. 

     We have very strong traditionalist beliefs in our rules which are very much engraved in our way of life. They are not our doctrine, but they are engraved in our rules and these things cannot lightly be set aside. Apostolic people can see no difference in the rules and the doctrine, and it is for these reasons that you must use discretion. You cannot flaunt your progressive ideas on some other individual who really is offended at that. There is a reformed movement of people in every institution. When we say institution, we mean that it is in the schools, on the jobs, in labor unions, in religion and in the family. 

Here Apostle Shelton deals with the functioning of the family.  Many people today come from single parent households or southern American household, or household and families from other cultures and countries which may be foreign to northern American families. But the Modern Apostolic Church must be able to address these problems in a righteous way.

     The way a family is now functioning is so differently than the way a family functioned fifty years ago. We have our Secretary General who is older than most of you (the youth) and we are sure that he could give an experience on how families operated. Your family operated as a unit.  The best food was saved for the father.  He asked the blessing at dinner. We are not talking about Apostolic families, but families in general (American families). The whole family together. Whatever there was to eat, they ate together. Some families, however, did have the custom where the father ate first and then the others ate, It was either that or they all ate together. They did things as a unit.  They all lived in the same house. Quite frequently when a son married, he brought his wife to his parents’ home and his children were raised there. It was the grandfather and the grandmother who set the tone, not only for the married son, but for the daughter-in-law and the grandchildren as well.  After you are married, you owed an allegiance to your parents. Of the total family center, the majority is the children. The focus is on youth. The parents generally pleads with the children to 'please eat his spinach,' to 'please drink his milk'.

      The father in the family is a very unhealthy person because our society is becoming matriarchal. We talked about the patriarchal dispensation where the father reigned.  Now it is becoming matriarchal, meaning just the opposite or mother centered.  It is very sick in the sense that it is the woman who has the real symbol. She does not have any real influence. In fact, both parents have lost most of the control but if anyone has any unifying factor of the family, it is the mother. She has become more or less the caretaker, the maid, she picks up all the clothes as the children them. This was not so in the old family system because each child had a responsibility toward the family system and each one was assigned his duties in the home. Now, if a child does a duty, invariably he must get paid. He works for the parents and he will name his price. 

Here Apostle Shelton deals with the rise of the female or mother in the family and society. This rise of feminism produced errors of interpretation concerning women teachers of the bible with the implication that God does not call or use women which is totally untrue.  What is True is that the role of the father and mother are not interchangeable. A Father can never become a mother nor can a mother ever become a Father when dealing with the order of the family given by God. We will go into more detail during a later message.

     In addition to the maid, the mother becomes the lawyer, and the stockbroker. She pleads with the father for money for the children and they use her as an intermediary between the father. The father is a fixture in the family. He is the individual who they to go out and work in the rain and snow.  They permit him to go out and allow him to come back in the house; that is, if he does not disturb their order too much, especially at night. The father is the most disrespected figure in the family system. This is why there is an over-riding ascendency for the male to wear extremely long hair. It is the glorification of the female. It is also the defemination of the female that she wears a bob, male pants, and tailored suits and blouses. This is not necessarily an overtone or perversion in sexuality. This is a symbolism in what and where your power structures are.   Now you might ask, where are your power structures? It is with the woman. She has the predominance and so the woman assumes the antique symbolism of who once ruled. She assumes the outward vesture or the outward clothing of the male, so she becomes defeminized.  She becomes masculine and mannish.

      You may wonder, does society have anything to say about what styles they wear? Does a group of women get together and say we are going to wear miniskirts for one year and long skirts for the next year?  No!  Designers get on the drawing and literally tell what is fashionable each year or each season. Society is so weak it does not have the strength to rebel. If this is the style, miniskirts, or extremely long skirts then they all will wear them. Years ago, regardless to what was the style from Paris, a woman or a mother was able to say, 'I am not going to wear it, neither are my children going to wear it.' But now it is the mass advertisement, television and magazines that persuade society. They think that this is the right thing to do.  What makes you think it is the right thing to do? This is the reason why we want you to think these things.

      Who said that it is the right thing for each of the family to eat separately?  Families do not even eat together anymore know. Have you taken notice of the typical family? One eats hot dogs, another eats steaks, another eats pork chops, and still another might eat hamburgers. They all sit at the same table but in most cases, they do not talk to each other. If they do, they growl and snap at each other. One might stand up while the other sits down. Saying grace at the table is an absolute antiquity. If you said grace at the table, they would wonder if you were asleep.

     We have to teach a doctrine that is as old as time itself. Even before the foundation of the earth, this Doctrine was in God and we have to tell people about it. This is what we are talking about when we say what is our place in modern society. What function do we serve? Salvation? Yes, but we serve a definite function to this changing society and this modern world. We serve as an absolute protest to conformity.

ROMANS 12:1- 2 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.  And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

The oneness that Jesus prayed for they do not want it in the area of religion. But Jesus prayed that they all be one. John 17:21)

JOHN 17:20 - 21 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.

 We will continue this message in Part 2 of the Modern Apostolic Church.

May the Lord Bless you and Keep you and eternally hold you in the center of his will, may he open your understanding that you will come to know that you must repent of your sins and be baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins, then continue in prayer until you receive the gift of the Holy Ghost with the sign following speaking with other tongues as the spirit gives you utterances.  That you will leave the principles of the doctrine and go on to perfection overcoming the love of the world, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life and continue steadfastly in the Apostle’s Doctrine remembering always that he that endures until the End, the same shall be saved. Amen

With perfect love,
Apostle Dennis G. Smith


Guide to Church Meetings during this coronavirus pandemic

Please be aware that if someone infected with coronavirus comes into the Church building it may contain infection for 72 hours afterwards unless cleaning is carried out.  Remember that the Church building is being accessed by other people undertaking essential work such as construction contractors, cleaning and maintenance personnel so that the proper safety protocols must be followed such as social distancing, and the use of personal protective equipment such as mask, gloves, and possibly face shields.  Because of the risk of infection, it is best that you get tested for the virus to protect yourself and others before attending a meeting as the restrictions are lifted.

     If multiple people are entering the building, even one at a time they must  maintain  the six feet apart  social distancing recommendations.
All individuals entering the building must be warned of the risks to their lives should someone enter not following safety protocols calling reckless endangerment to others as faith in God which is absolute foolishness.   A record of who goes in the building and when will be kept with proper regard for the risk of transmission. A supply of hand sanitizer, mask, and gloves will be kept with the record near the main entrance to the church. It is best for people to bring their own pens to use or wear gloves when touching all surfaces including Bibles.  A record of who is in the building and when will be maintained so that if there is an incident at the Church it will be clear who was the last person known to have been in the building.  Do not listen to those who call safety guidelines lack of faith or who have a poor understanding of the doctrine on fear. Fear is only detrimental to your soul when you are afraid to live a holy life because of what people will say or do to you, or when you have no reverence and love for the Lord Jesus Christ who is God Almighty.


What Is Social Distancing?

·         Social distancing means staying away from close contact in public spaces. It includes actions like staying out of places where lots of people gather and maintaining distance — approximately 6 feet — from others.

·         Social distancing also includes minimizing contact with people by avoiding public transportation when possible, limiting nonessential travel, working from home, and skipping social gatherings.

·         All people should practice social distancing — not just those who are seriously ill or at high risk.

·         Social distancing is a proven way to slow the spread of pandemics.


When to Wear a Mask?

Those who are staying home and have no close contact with people who are infected with COIVID-19 do not need a mask most of the time. However, wearing a nonmedical or homemade mask may be helpful in certain situations or for certain populations. Wear a Mask when….

·        Shopping at essential businesses, like grocery stores or pharmacies.

·         While visiting your health care provider.

·         Traveling on public transportation.

·         Interacting with customers/clients at essential businesses.

·        When feeling sick, coughing, or sneezing.

·        In all public spaces indoors and outdoors.

Because homemade masks protect everyone else from the droplets created by the wearer, it is important that as many people as possible wear these masks when leaving their homes. This helps prevent those who may be infectious but are only mildly symptomatic or not symptomatic from spreading the virus to others in the community.

Everyone should remember the phrase: “My mask protects you; your mask protects me.” By increasing the overall number of people who are containing their coughs, sneezes, and other droplets, it will help us control the overall spread of the virus.


Center for Disease Control Interim Guidance for Communities of Faith

CDC offers the following general considerations to help communities of faith discern how best to practice their beliefs while keeping their staff and congregations safe.

Encourage use of cloth face coverings among staff and congregants. Face coverings are most essential when social distancing is difficult. Note: Cloth face coverings should not be placed on children younger than 2 years old, anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious, and anyone who is incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face covering without assistance. Cloth face coverings are meant to protect other people in case the wearer is unknowingly infected but does not have symptoms.

Encourage staff and congregants to maintain good hand hygiene, washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

Have adequate supplies to support healthy hygiene behaviors, including soap, hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol (for those who can safely use hand sanitizer), tissues, and no-touch trash cans.

Encourage staff and congregants to cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or use the inside of their elbow. Used tissues should be thrown in the trash and hands washed.

Whenever soap and water are not readily available, hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can be used.

Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at least daily and shared objects in between uses.

Develop a schedule of increased, routine cleaning and disinfection.

Avoid use of items that are not easily cleaned, sanitized, or disinfected.

Ensure safe and correct application of disinfectants and keep them away from children.

Cleaning products should not be used near children, and staff should ensure that there is adequate ventilation when using these products to prevent children or themselves from inhaling toxic fumes.

Ensure that ventilation systems operate properly and increase circulation of outdoor air as much as possible by opening windows and doors, using fans, etc. Do not open windows and doors if they pose a safety risk to children using the facility.

If your faith community offers multiple services, consider scheduling services far enough apart to allow time for cleaning and disinfecting high-touch surfaces between services. Take steps to ensure that all water systems and features (for example, drinking fountains, decorative fountains) are safe to use after a prolonged facility shutdown to minimize the risk of Legionnaires’ disease and other diseases associated with water.

Promote social distancing at services and other gatherings, ensuring that clergy, staff, choir, volunteers, and attendees at the services follow social distancing to lessen their risk.  Ensure that staff and children remain at least 6 feet apart in lines and at other times.

Consider whether physical contact (e.g., shaking hands, hugging, or kissing) can be limited among members of the faith community.