A new B.C. public health order expected this week will allow faith groups to host in-person, indoor services. (Facebook/Dan Moskovitz)

A new B.C. public health order expected this week will allow faith groups to host in-person, indoor services. (Facebook/Dan Moskovitz)

‘A man-made miracle’: Indoor faith services set to return as part of B.C.’s restart plan

Rabbi Dan Moskovitz says science and everyday citizens following health guidelines are to thank for the return of in-person gatherings

As consultations wrap up between the province and faith leaders, a return to in-person worship services is imminent for synagogues, churches and other B.C. places of worship.

“This is an answer to our prayers,” said Vancouver Temple Sholom’s Rabbi Dan Moskovitz, who hasn’t led an in-temple service since last March.

With a new public health order expected this week, faith groups in B.C. will be given a clear set of safety protocols to follow in order to host indoor gatherings.

READ ALSO: ‘Caring for others:’ Mosque, synagogue advise church to follow COVID rules

Reopening a ‘man-made’ miracle

Moskovitz said the province’s declining COVID-19 case rate is a “man-made miracle.”

“It has been science, health-care workers, and everyday citizens following health guidelines that have allowed us to achieve this.”

The rabbi is one of a dozen faith leaders in talks with provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry. Two weeks ago, the group was alerted to the coming return of in-person services.

Moskovitz said, “if we can solve this pandemic we can solve climate change, societal injustice, anything.”

READ MORE: As many as 19 Fraser Valley churches have defied a COVID-related ban on in-person worship

Although some Fraser Valley churches have continued to gather in-person, defying health orders, the majority have pivoted to online worship.

“Families have put off weddings, bar mitzvahs and funerals during the pandemic,” Moskovitz said.

“When we come back, all of this pent-up grieving and celebrating will finally be able to be done.”

Meantime, faith communities are permitted to gather outdoors with up to 50 people.

RELATED: Here’s who you can see, and where, as B.C. reopens



sarah.grochowski@bpdigital.ca

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