The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Sunday recommended that “mass gatherings” with 50 or more people be canceled or postponed for eight weeks to fight the coronavirus pandemic – a time span that includes Easter and other religious holidays.
Churches were not excluded from the guidance. The recommendation came hours before the U.S. surgeon general said the nation could become like Italy if major changes to public habits aren’t made. Italy is under lockdown.
Numerous churches across the U.S. held online services Sunday.
“Large events and mass gatherings can contribute to the spread of COVID-19 in the United States via travelers who attend these events and introduce the virus to new communities,” the CDC recommendation said. “Examples of large events and mass gatherings include conferences, festivals, parades, concerts, sporting events, weddings, and other types of assemblies. These events can be planned not only by organizations and communities but also by individuals.
“Therefore, CDC, in accordance with its guidance for large events and mass gatherings, recommends that for the next 8 weeks, organizers (whether groups or individuals) cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more throughout the United States.
“Events of any size should only be continued if they can be carried out with adherence to guidelines for protecting…