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More Elders letters for In-Person Meetings

Direction Related to Resuming In-Person Meetings for Bodies of Elders March 15, 2022 Table of Contents

  • In view of the protection that vaccination provides against the COVID-19 virus, many have chosen to get vaccinated to reduce their risk. However, an individual does not have to be vaccinated in order to attend in-person meetings unless it is a requirement by the secular authorities. Attendees should not be asked to provide proof of vaccination nor should you conduct any form of survey. Temperature checks will not be required at the door. However, anyone exhibiting cold or flu-like symptoms should stay at home and tie in via videoconferencing. Personal choices regarding vaccination and whether to attend in person should be respected.

  • Unless local regulations by the secular authorities direct otherwise, physical distancing is not required at in-person congregation meetings.

  • Mask-wearing is encouraged for those attending the meetings in person. Program participants may choose to wear a mask or not while on the platform. Of course, secular regulations may require wearing a mask.

  • Safety precautions signage (Appendix B) should be posted at the Kingdom Hall entrance regarding the importance of remaining at home if experiencing cold or flu-like symptoms or if one has been exposed to or tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 10 days.

  • All should be encouraged to bring their own masks with them to the Kingdom Hall. However, a modest supply of masks, preferably N95 or a local equivalent, should be maintained at the Kingdom Hall for those who do not have one with them when they arrive.

CONGREGATION MEETINGS During the first month of in-person meetings, the following announcement should be read to the congregation before each meeting: “As a kind reminder, please note the following: All in attendance at the Kingdom Hall are encouraged to wear a mask. If you are exhibiting cold or flu-like symptoms or have been exposed to or tested positive for COVID-19 within the past ten days, please tie in to the meeting via videoconference. Although physical distancing will not be required, all should be respectful of each person’s decision regarding physical contact. If you have questions, you may speak to one of the attendants. Thank you for your cooperation.” Congregation meetings will originate from the Kingdom Hall following the direction provided in the S-260 and S-261 for hybrid meetings. It is preferred that those handling parts on a meeting do so in person at the Kingdom Hall. This adjusts what is stated in Audio/Video Guidelines for Resuming In-Person Meetings at the Kingdom Hall, which will be revised in due course. If the body of elders feels that they should temporarily pause in-person congregation meetings due to local COVID-19 developments, they should first consult with their circuit overseer. The body of elders should also contact their circuit overseer for other questions regarding the resumption of in-person meeting

SPECIAL TALK AND MEMORIAL ARRANGEMENTS It is the Governing Body’s earnest desire that all congregations worldwide hold in-person meetings for the special talk and for the Memorial observance and that the talks be given in person. The use of Assembly Halls for the Memorial is permitted, and there is no objection to renting a facility for the Memorial. (sfl chap. 21 par. 4) If you plan to rent a venue for the Memorial, please review the Renting Facilities for Theocratic Events (TO-19) and Request for Certificate of Insurance (TO-17) documents on If after exhausting all possibilities you cannot locate a suitable facility for the Memorial, you may hold it on Zoom with a local or visiting speaker.

  • If needed, adjust information included on printed invitations. As a reminder, do not include details on how to connect to the program by videoconference.

  • On March 21, 2022, the feature for adding Memorial times will be updated to allow congregations to indicate whether the Memorial will be held in person or virtually. This updated information will be visible to the public beginning March 28, 2022. Congregation secretaries should follow through accordingly.

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