New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said allowing more people to attend indoor religious services is on the list of coronavirus-related restrictions he is looking to ease up on, The Hill reports.
During his daily briefing, Murphy told reporters he is looking toward relaxing restrictions in place on how many people can attend in-person religious services around June 12.
But, he said, any changes made will be based on data. He did not provide any specific details on how many people would be allowed to congregate in a church at one time.
“As long as our health metrics continue to trend in the right direction, I anticipate being able to raise the limits on indoor gatherings in a way that will allow for greater indoor religious services for the weekend of June 12,” Murphy said.
Currently, churches are allowed to hold indoor gatherings with a maximum of 10 people. He also recently permitted churches to host drive-in services and outdoor services.
“Our houses of worship are cornerstones of our communities — often rooted in historical and cultural tradition,” he said. "We want them to be strong, and safe. This is especially meaningful in our communities of color, which have been hit particularly hard.”
President Donald Trump called all houses of worship “essential” last week and told governors to let religious institutions reopen.
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