On April 28, twenty-one denominational leaders from ten denominations from across Iowa issued a joint statement regarding Governor Kim Reynolds proclamation on April 27 to allow congregations to gather in-person despite the continued spread of COVID-19. The joint statement urged congregations to refrain from in-person gatherings, including worship.
On Friday, May 8, Vice President Mike Pence is expected to be in Iowa to urge faith leaders to open up churches for worship. The denominational leaders remain committed to their statement from April 28 and continue to urge congregations to refrain from in-person gatherings.
The statement from April 28 signed by the twenty-one denominational leaders is attached. An introductory paragraph addressing the current visit by Vice President Mike Pence has been added to the statement by the denominational leaders:
As church denominational leaders, representing more than 1.2 million Christians throughout the state of Iowa, we are grateful for the opportunity provided by the upcoming visit of Vice President Mike Pence to re-issue and recommit to our position regarding in-person gatherings of faith communities, whether for worship or group ministries.
With one voice, we want to assure the Vice President that Iowa’s denominational leaders are currently working closely with local faith leaders in developing plans for when it becomes time to gather again in person. That time is likely to arrive in waves, reflecting regional diversity, with particular attention given to safe practices and a close observation of the scientific and local data on the spread of this coronavirus.
We continue to abide unanimously to our statement of April 28th, which we re-issue at this time.