Preparing for Re-Opening Guidelines to help you navigate the re-opening of our church campus

Guidelines to help us navigate covid-19 in our parish

We hope you have been taking advantage of our Livestream, and hope for those who are able to attend our outside Sunday worship services on the Essex Town Green.

The Re-Opening Task Force has been hard at work planning and implementing the phased re-opening of our parish. Please find an outline of our current re-opening structure below.

As the situation remains fluid, please check our website.


Currently, there is limited access to the buildings and masks are required at all times. Our staff continue to work remotely, rotating office use as needed. As staff are not in the office on a regular basis, you must schedule appointments in advance.

Contact clergy or lay staff

Group meetings will remain online via Zoom.

It will be some time before facility usage will return to the way it had been prior to the pandemic.


Children’s Ministries will continue its online offerings (Zoom gatherings once a month) through the summer. To learn more about these offerings, please contact the Children and Youth Director, Rebecca Honan.

Adult formation opportunities are still available via zoom. To learn more about these offerings, please contact The Rev. Linda Spiers or Chelsea DiDonato.

Compline I Tuesdays and Thursdays, 8:30 pm

Contemplative Prayer Group I Wednesdays, 5 pm

Men’s Discussion Group I Saturdays, 9 am


STARTING august 16:

Sundays, 8am | In person-Outdoor service, (inside during inclement weather)
Sundays, 10am | Indoor service-streaming only)


It is important that we follow social distancing and other protocols to mitigate the spread of COVID 19. For the health and safety of the entire community, St. Johns will require all participants attending its in-person services to be symptom-free, and willing to observe the safety precautions listed below.

The Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut recommends those age 65+ to refrain from attending church at this time, and watch the live stream services from home. All are welcome-however, please use your discretion in deciding whether to attend services in person.

Safety Guidelines:

To attend services, all persons in your party must agree to:

  1. SIGN UP/PREREGISTRATION- will be required for in person worship services. This enables us to enforce our capacity limitations, (planning for contingency of moving indoors), and will also help for contact tracing purposes, if needed.
  2. STAY HOME if anyone in your household has exhibited symptoms of COVID-19 within the last month.
  3. CHECK IN at least 15 minutes prior to the service to confirm your attendance, to answer quick questions, and to have your temperature taken by non-invasive means.
  4. FOLLOW ALL INSTRUCTIONS of ushers and posted placards on the church grounds.
  5. WEAR A MASK covering your nose and mouth AT ALL TIMES while on the grounds or in church.
  6. MAINTAIN A PHYSICAL DISTANCE of at least 6 feet from all persons not in your immediate household.
  7. The exchanging of the PEACE and the taking of the SACRAMENTS is NOT PERMITTED at this time by the diocese. 
  8. BRING YOUR MOBILE PHONE or print out an order of service, or pick up a printed copy on the Green. The order of service is available on our website. Prayerbooks and Hymnals will be removed from the pews.
  9. For outside worship: BRING FOLDING CHAIRS OR A BLANKET to sit on during the service (given that seating will not otherwise be provided).
  10. For inside worship: Expect to see ONE WAY directional signage and DESIGNATED SEATING areas. Ushers will be available to assist you with seating. Those not seated appropriately will be asked to move.
  11. RESTROOMS: Restroom facility users must SANITIZE SURFACES before and after use with wipes to be provided.
  12. REFRAIN FROM SOCIALIZING OR LINGERING on church grounds (including the parking lot) after the service.
  13. John’s will ask all parishioners and attendees to release it from any and all liability after having read the following “Informed Consent”.

COVID-19 is a serious and highly communicable disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, senior citizens and individuals with underlying medical conditions are especially vulnerable. An inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present. Although St. John’s Essex asks all attendees to observe certain precautions, there is no assurance of protection from exposure to COVID-19 at our worship services. The risk of exposure to COVID-19 is voluntarily assumed by all attendees.

For those who would like to view our full policies and procedures on the safety of our parish for COVID-19. Below is the full document, and if you’re having trouble viewing the document? Download Here!

Download Here!