Two months after the Supreme Court overturned the state’s ban on indoor services, many churches in Lodi are preparing to host Easter Sunday events, either in-person or online.
Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office issued revised guidelines for indoor church services on Feb. 7, one day after the Supreme Court lifted the state’s ban on indoor worship during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Revised guidelines limit indoor service attendance to 25% capacity in counties within the purple and red tiers of the California Health Department’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy, and restrictions have been placed on singing and chanting to slow the spread of COVID-19.
For counties in the orange or yellow tiers, capacity is limited to 50%.
Because San Joaquin County remains in the purple tier, indoor services at local churches will be limited to 25% capacity.
Here is a list of various Easter Sunday services in Lodi:
• Bear Creek Community Church will host Easter service at its 111171 N. Lower Sacramento Road at 10 a.m. Sunday. The service will be broadcast simultaneously online at the church’s Facebook and YouTube sites as well.
• Century Assembly will host in-person Easter Sunday services at 9 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. at its 550 W. Century Blvd. location, as well as online at www.facebook.com/CenturyAssembly.
• Calvary Bible Church in Lodi will host an Easter Scavenger Hunt at its 2301 W. Lodi Ave. location Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Easter Sunday services will be held both at the church and online. For information, visit www.www.lodi.thecalvary.org.
• Episcopal Church of St. John the Baptist continues to hold all its services online, including Easter Sunday. Visit www.stjohnsoflodi.org.
• First Baptist Church of Lodi will offer three different service times Sunday, at 8:30 a.m., 9:45 a.m. and 11 a.m. in the Worship Center. A Spanish service will be held at 9:45 a.m. A light brunch will be served on the church terrace from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.
• Grace Presbyterian Church: Grace Presbyterian will have an online worship service at 10 a.m. For more information, visit www.gracelodi.org/livestream.
• The Home Church will host in-person services at 10:30 a.m. at 11451 N. West Lane, with free scones and coffee, and a new church for youngsters. Visit www.thehomechurch.net/events for more information.
• Lifeline Church will host a 10 a.m. service on Sunday at its 500 Park St. location.
• St. Anne’s Catholic Church, will host in-person Easter Sunday services at ADDY at 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Spanish services will be held at 7 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Communion will be held in the church plaza from 2-5 p.m.
• St. Paul Lutheran Church is offering streaming services this Sunday, with an English stream at 10 a.m. Prayers with the pastor are held on Facebook daily at 6 and 9 a.m., noon, and 3, 6 and 9 p.m. For more information and links to the livestreams, visit www.stpaullodi.com. Un servicio religioso en español se llevará a cabo en línea a las 12:30 p.m. Domingo.
• Vinewood Community Church will have in-person Easter Sunday service at 10 a.m. at 1900 W. Vine St.
The Supreme Court declared its ruling on Feb. 6 after two Southern California churches — South Bay United Pentecostal Church in Chula Vista and Pasadena-based Harvest Rock Church and Harvest International Ministry — argued the state’s ban on indoor services violated First Amendment rights regarding religious freedoms.
California implemented the ban because health experts determined COVID-19 is spread more easily through indoor gatherings. In addition, health experts have said singing can spread the virus through tiny droplets of saliva.
Since the beginning of the pandemic last March, Newsom’s office has said restrictions on indoor services are meant to protect worshippers from infection.