The Grace Cathedral in San Francisco will soon have proof-of-vaccination as a requirement for entry. The vaccine mandate will apply to congregants and people attending other services and events at the church.
Leaders at the church said that the vaccine passport move is in line with guidance from public health officials on gatherings and events. However, churches are not required to follow the city-wide vaccine passport mandate, as there is a religious exemption in the state.
Grace Cathedral says it wants parishioners and other visitors to feel “safe,” the church leader said.
The cathedral, one of the largest Episcopal Cathedrals in the US, hosts multiple services and events, including yoga, attended by a large number of people.
Dean Malcolm Young told reporters that there has been a mixed reaction amongst parishioners about the vaccine mandate, but he feels most people support it. He added that everyone in the church should feel safe, and vaccine passports were the best way to do that.
The mandate will apply to all parishioners and visitors over the age of 12. Enforcement of the vaccine for non-church events will begin on Tuesday, September 7 and for those attending church services, the mandate will come into effect on September 29.
Political commentator Calvin Robinson, speaking on the Trans World Radio Christian network, called the decision “evil.”
“They are divisive in that they’re saying who can and who cannot attend Church and that is separating people from God, and therefore the definition of evil.”