FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): While public and private gatherings in Indiana are now limited to 25 people as part of Indiana’s phase 2 of reopening, religious gatherings have no limit as long as social distancing is still in place.
Gov. Eric Holcomb says that’s because the state is actually planning to use worshipers as a kind of “control group” to see if the spread of COVID-19 in Indiana really is under control:
“When it came down to making the ultimate decision on places of worship, we said we’d recommend this now to see, as we look back 14 days or 21 days, what effect it might have,” he said in a press briefing Monday. “If we can manage this, it gives us a lot of confidence in some other arenas as well. We thought a good place to start or have a control group would be places of worship — that these would be, in my mind, most responsible. But I did say we needed those church leaders to be responsible for their congregations. We can prove we can do this, and I think we’ll see just that.”
The state is still encouraging churches and other places of worship to hold virtual services if they’re uncomfortable holding traditional services for now.