As Pastors our call is to support people as they navigate the highs and lows of life. It is hard when we can't be there in person and whilst that is still the case for most pastoral situations in Level 3 the good news is we can again provide support on the death of loved ones. But what we can do is still very limited. We have updated the Funeral Guidelines for Ministers to reflect the latest advice that
Ministers may officiate as celebrants at Funerals, Tangihanga, So mate, Ala, and Putu under the direction of the Funeral Director. They will be counted as one of the up to 10 people who can gather for the service.
Ministers can provide last rites in a hospital, hospice or private residence under Alert Level 3. In a health facility, they will need to adhere with the relevant visiting policy and infection prevention procedures.
However, Ministers are not allowed to attend the home of the deceased person to offer in-person pastoral support while we are in Alert Level 3.
The Guidelines for Churches in Alert Level 3 have also been updated to reflect some changes around permitted use of buildings.
Also on the website are the policy for entering buildings under Level 3 and a template to help Servant Leaders develop the church's Covid-19 Safety Plan. This is a government mandated requirement (i.e. it has to be done) and, after approval by the Servant Leaders, is to be filed with me (the National Secretary) before anyone enters the building.
Early next week we will be providing resources to help Ministers and Leaders plan for Level 2 - when we get there.