A Message from Dean Thompson
Dear Cathedral Family & Friends,
As the COVID Omicron variant moves through the Houston community, the Cathedral senior staff and I confer daily about campus protocols and public health. Public health officials share that the Omicron variant is considerably more transmissible than prior variants of COVID. Blessedly, they also share that, for fully-vaccinated and boostered people without underlying health conditions, Omicron cases are often asymptomatic or relatively mild.
As we gather for in-person worship and other events at Christ Church, we continue to abide by all the most up-to-date guidance provided by public health officials in light of this latest surge. Additionally, some parishioners are self-selecting an extra layer of protection by deciding to forego public gatherings for a few weeks.
We will continue to monitor conditions with great care, as we also confer with Texas Medical Center leadership and stay up-to-date on Centers for Disease Control counsel and advice. There are signs elsewhere globally, and hope locally, that the Omicron wave will crest soon and begin to subside. In the meantime, the Wardens and I offer this counsel and encouragement:
- If you are fully-vaccinated and plan worship in-person, we strongly encourage you to wear a mask. When gathering indoors, masking is demonstrated to be one of the most effective means of preventing the spread of COVID. Surgical-grade masks are available at the Cathedral, and our ushers can provide you with one when you arrive.
- Recall that Sunday services at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. (Spanish) and 5 p.m. are available via livestream at www.christchurchcathedral.org. If you are in a high risk category for COVID complications, or if you are otherwise apprehensive about attending worship in-person, we encourage you to engage services online.
- Additionally, if you have had a positive COVID test in the past 5-7 days, or if you have symptoms of illness of any kind, please worship from home via our livestream.
- Beyond worship, we encourage you to get your COVID booster. The best epidemiological evidence says that a booster shot greatly enhances one's protection against both infection and serious illness from COVID.
We take precautions because we love one another. Our love mirrors the love of God for us, as we embody the Great Commandment to “love one another as Jesus loves us” (John 14:34). Indeed, on this Twelfth Night—the eve of the Epiphany—our love for one another serves as the light that shines in the darkness, like the star that guides the Magi to the Christ. Epiphany Blessings to you.
Grace and peace,
The Very Reverend Barkley Thompson, Dean