CALIFORNIA—On Thursday, July 2, California announced that citizens are still permitted to practice their religion in their preferred house of worship, but are exempted from vocal activities such as singing to avoid further spread of the coronavirus.

The revised COVID-19 guidelines were issued on Wednesday, July 1, by the State Department of Public Health, who ordered churches and other houses of worship to stop all activities like singing or chanting, although they will still remain open for public. The reason for the prohibition is because health agencies such as the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have confirmed that activities such as shouting, or singing can facilitate the spread the disease, just as easily as coughing or sneezing. The state of California has posted detailed guidelines to follow in places of worship, such as live-streaming singing activities instead of practicing in real life, as mentioned in the website:

A picture of inside the Saddleback Church, in Los Angeles (courtesy of website

The website also advises the members the church to practice their religious rituals at home, rather than coming together in an institution. They also advise against kissing any objects for a religious ritual, as it can help transmit the coronavirus disease. Food is discouraged in churches, as well, and if served, workers are urged use disposable plates or cups to avoid the transmission of COVID-19. The Saddleback Church, an institution in Los Angeles, California has posted online programs for hosting religious activities, as it complies with the social distancing measures outlined by the state.