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Friday, 15 January 2021

U.S. churches slowly begin to reopen

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U.S. churches slowly begin to reopen
U.S. churches slowly begin to reopen

Some places of worship slowly began to reopen over the weekend in the United States at reduced capacity and with social distancing measures.

Gavino Garay has more.

Some churches in U.S. states including Arizona and Illinois began reopening on Sunday, with limited capacity and social distancing measures implemented at the recommendation of federal health authorities.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP SAYING: "Some governors have deemed liquor stores, abortion clinics as essential, but have left our churches and other houses of worship.

That's not right.

President Donald Trump on Friday urged U.S. states to allow the reopening this weekend of places of worship that have been closed due to the coronavirus, and warned he would override governors who do not do so.

Places of worship have been closed as part of stay-at-home orders most states have used to try to control the spread of the virus.

Some churchgoers in Phoenix, Arizona on Sunday, felt elated at the partial reopening.

"There's nothing like gathering again and just seeing friends and family." Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus task force coordinator, encouraged worshipers who are vulnerable not to go or to wait longer to attend services.

New CDC guidelines encourage worshipers to bow or wave instead of shaking hands, hugging or kissing.

But reopening churches in other countries has been a challenge.

In Germany, authorities are trying to trace everyone who attended a church service in Frankfurt this month after more than 100 people tested positive for the coronavirus.

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