Georgia’s Governor Brian Kemp issued a new shelter-in-place order that begins the evening of April 3, 2020. The Georgia Baptist Mission Board had a Zoom call this morning with Kemp and Brad Hughes, Chairman of the Public Affairs Committee for Georgia Baptists and Director of Field Operations for Governor Kemp, to explain what the new order means for churches in the state of Georgia. You can access the recording of this Zoom call here.
Also you can access a handout here (also linked to in the above link) that answers many questions about the executive order.
- The new state requirements go into effect at 6:00 tonight and continue through April 13. (Of course, there is the possibility that they will be extended beyond this date.)
- These new state requirements trump any county or local requirements.
- Yes, you can still have a team of 10 or less record a church service or do one on live stream as long as they stay six feet apart from each other. (The way it reads, you actually can have more than 10. You just need to exercise all caution.)
- Yes, a church may still meet physically for services, but you have to ensure the six feet apart rule and other protections.
- Yes, staff can meet at their building to work, but it is recommended that staff work at home as much as possible and other precautions should be taken.
- For a list of the protections you need to observe on site, look at the list of 20 requirements on pages 20-21 of the handout I linked to above.
- Yes, you can do drive-in church. But you can’t let them get out of their cars and can’t let them access restrooms. If you can’t trust your people to follow those rules, then don’t do it. Also, if you do have it, consider making the service shorter than normal.