Vern's Special Advice for Weddings
We all hope the mask policy can be discontinued very soon!
Only well people should attend weddings.
2022 March 9
At over 100 weddings during COVID,
I've required masks for everyone except the couple,
but the local situation has now improved so that
all guests need not be masked unless couples request this.
You still may want to seriously consider everyone masking
if any of your guests are elderly or health-challenged in any way.
Masks are still highly recommended but otherwise not required
for short weddings with the pews no more than half full of guests.
I continue to monitor Omicron BA.2.
The Chapel staff and I will still be masked.
Other mitigations (like excellent ventilation) are already in place.
We all hope no new variants will require return to earlier policies.
|2022 MAR 9 Jackson County is currently in a “medium” level of COVID, so the CDC recommends masks indoors if at risk for exposure.
For local CDC updates: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/your-health/covid-by-county.html
For local MARC updates: https://marc2.org/covidhub/
Health and Safety
The following is retained on this page
Extra Wedding Attire
except for the couple during the ceremony
inside the Chapel building
--Vern Barnet's policy
with details below
Your officiant's latest policy will be abandoned when the
Test kits and K95 masks are available
Because the prevalence of the virus in our community
waxes and wanes in ways that cannot be adequately predicted, and variant
forms of the virus can suddenly worsen the situation before we are aware
of it, continuing precautions are advisable to assure a safe wedding day
-- and days after.
The focus of a wedding, and wedding planning, should be the expression of your love and commitment. This is such a happy thing, and I always feel so wonderfully privileged to be a part of the celebration. All of the weddings I have done at Pilgrim Chapel and elsewhere since 2020 March 20 have been wonderfully joyous occasions, despite the extra attire.
Some couples have even provided masks customized with their names and the wedding date for their guests.
Should any of your invited family members and guests indicate ahead of time that they do not want to wear masks and are not fully vaccinated, please feel free to share this with them. Folks with asthma who cannot tolerate masks should wait outside until the wedding begins and then sit in the back of the Chapel.
Masks protect both the wearer and those around the wearer by limiting the transmission of the virus to others as well as reducing the likelihood of the wearer becoming infected.
You, as bride and groom, are not required to wear masks during the ceremony, but if your attendants are uncomfortable with being close to you during the ceremony, you might consider wearing a mask along with everyone else except for the embrace after you are pronounced married.
The folks at Pilgrim Chapel and I are masked even though we have been vaccinated because even those vaccinated can trasmit Covid in all its variants. We would not want to take any chance of transmitting the virus in any of its variants to you or your guests. Since the virus can be transmitted by aerosol up to 16 feet away in closed spaces, it is difficult to be certain that one is not a spreader, especially if one has no symptoms. I am masked to model to reassure your guests that the wedding environment is safe.
Vaccinations can be up to 95% effective for a time, but that means that 5 persons out of every 100 are are susceptible to the disease if exposed to it. The new variants are particularly transmissible, and breakthrough infections including death happen.
Ventilation is why I ask the Chapel staff to turn on the ceiling fans.
All guests at a wedding will want to show that they cherish the couple, the families, and friends gathered for the occasion by wearing masks properly *unless every single person at the wedding has verifiably completed the vaccination protocol and you wish a maskless ceremony.
Although surface contagion is rare, right before
and after the ceremony, I sanitize my hands so any objects I touch that
you will touch will be as safe as possible.
GROOM'S HELP.-- Only once since the pandemic bagan, during which I've performed over 100 weddings, have I had trouble with someone refusing to wear a mask. When he would not respond to my request, I called on the groom (more available than the bride) to speak to that person who then complied so the wedding could proceed.
If you might want a photo of me without a mask, many photographers have found that I can stand outside on the steps of the Chapel with the couple without masks some distance ahead of me. A photo at the Chapel door makes a lovely picture. A quick photo inside is also possible, depending on the timing and the position of the guests.
are worn to cover the nose and the mouth. Here is a link to good
advice about masks. Children under 2 should not wear masks.
CDC NIOSH approved n95 masks:
BRIDE DIES -- A colleague of mine recently performed
a wedding at which guests did not wear masks. Shortly after the wedding,
the bride and groom were sick with COVID and the bride died in the hospital.
Masks are such a small inconvenience to prevent such sorrow.