Caring for one another as Christ asks us to do: Trinity, Hamilton’s COVID-19 monitoring system

Caring for one another as Christ asks us to do: Trinity, Hamilton’s COVID-19 monitoring system 1662 1224 Episcopalians in Connection

The Diocesan Medical Task Force has completed its work, Bishop Smith announced in his address to diocesan convention on Saturday. “Decisions about health protocols no longer benefit from diocesan-wide decisions,” he said. “It makes more sense for the protocols to be shaped in each locale according to what is happening there.” Bishop Smith asked that each parish track local COVID-19 infection rates, noting this information can easily be found on the CDC website.

“If infection spikes in your place, then consider what to do from that point – masking for worship, masking for all church meetings, other precautions that you have taken in the past that you might want to and might need to reinstate,” he said.

At Trinity, Hamilton, parish leaders have already implemented an effective COVID-19 monitoring system like the one Smith described by forming a small team that monitors CDC data and communicates with members each week. “We only recommend masks if the transmission rate is ‘high’ for Butler County,” Bridgid Cornell, a registered nurse and member of Trinity, says. “We send a newsletter out every week in advance of Sunday worship to advise what the level is that week. We also encourage parishioners not to come to church if they are feeling ill, regardless of the level. We continue to have a very active online ministry seven days a week.”

“We have quite a number of elderly folks who I go and visit and who come to services, and so we don’t want to take any chances with spreading or having somebody who is hospitalized or dies from COVID because we aren’t careful,” the Rev. Suzanne LeVesconte, Trinity’s rector, says. “We’re a community, so we care for one another, and this is a way of caring for one another, as Christ asks us to do.”

When infection rates rise to the “high” level, she says, masks are required not only for worship, but for meetings and ministries, including the congregation’s Free Clothes Closet.

Search your county’s infection rates on the CDC website.

Find COVID resources on the Ohio Department of Health website.