Due to the increasing spread of the Delta variant of COVID-19, both the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and the Illinois Department of Public Health have recommended that in areas of high or substantial risk all persons wear face masks while indoors regardless of their vaccination status. 

The Illinois Great Rivers Conference of The United Methodist Church urges adherence to CDC and IDPH guidelines.  Therefore, face masks will be required of everyone while in the Wesley UMC building for any reason as long as Coles County is considered a high or substantial risk area as it is now.  The Delta variant is proving to be much more easily transmitted and is an especially dangerous threat to unvaccinated people, including those with reduced immunity, medical conditions that make vaccination impossible, and children under the age of 12 who are not yet eligible for vaccination. 

While this feels like a step backwards, and many of us who are vaccinated feel safe without masks, we want to do everything we can to slow the spread of the virus and keep everyone safe.  So far, our efforts at Wesley have been 100% successful, and we want to keep it that way.  We will continue to issue updates as necessary via Wesley communications.  Meanwhile, let's continue to care and pray for our neighbors, especially those who are most vulnerable, and for an end to the COVID-19 virus.