KY churches getting accustomed to new statewide mask mandate

Updated: Jul. 13, 2020 at 12:01 AM CDT
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HENDERSON, Ky. (WFIE) - Sunday was the first day of worship since Kentucky’s mask mandate went into effect.

Many churches were back for services this weekend, including a church in Henderson that’s working to get accustomed to the new mandate.

[Mandatory mask mandate officially goes into effect throughout Kentucky]

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear’s mask order officially went into effect on Friday. The mandate has especially left an impact on churches throughout the commonwealth, but responses have varied from one place of worship to another.

”Honestly, we’ve almost had no pushback from it,” Minister David Salisbury with Henderson Church of Christ said. “Our leadership was really united behind it and just said this is the law, and we’re going to follow the law.”

According to the Governor’s orders, Kentuckians are required to wear masks in public. The mandate states this includes any indoor public space, where it is difficult to maintain a physical distance of at least six feet from anyone who isn’t a member of someone’s household.

Meanwhile, the state’s healthy-at-home guidelines mention places of worship should ensure that employees and congregants wear coverings over their mouths and nose while attending a service.

“There’s definitely some folks who said, ‘We came back because you were requiring masks - we would’ve stayed home if you weren’t',” Salisbury said.

Minister Salisbury says they’ve been requiring everyone to wear masks since the church reopened a month ago.

“It’s a close space and it’s a prolonged time - there’s lots of things that are significant risk factors and we do our best to mitigate it, but we believe we’re better off if we can meet together,” Salisbury said. “So we do everything we can to make that happen.”

Church officials tell 14 News they’re taking other precautionary measures against COVID-19. These measures include people receiving hand sanitizer upon arrival, communion being taken individually, the collection plate is no longer passed around, and guests are seated by families, or every other row.

Gov. Beshear’s mask mandate will be in effect over the next 30 days from when it started. 

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