As restrictions are eased in Maryland, many churches remain empty this weekend

SALISBURY, Md. – After more than six weeks, Maryland churches and other houses of worship are starting to reopen at up to 50 percent capacity as part of the state’s road to recovery phase one.

“It’s been wonderful to be able to be back in the building physically,” said Sarah Tarr-Southern, a member at the Faith Baptist Church in Salisbury.

On Sunday, the Faith Baptist Church in Salisbury reopened with groups spaced apart, sanitizing stations at every door while requiring all adults to wear masks.

We’re told although the previous restrictions were critical allowing churches to reopen was needed.

“It’s all been necessary and it all has helped flatten the curve and it’s been wonderful, but at some point in time we have to start seeing progress and moving forward and this is just the next step along the line,” said Pastor Robert Reinert at the Faith Baptist Church.

Meanwhile, other churches like the Oak Ridge Baptist Church remain closed as they continue to plan their reopening.

Pastor Brian Moss says he might host some people, but they’re just not ready to reopen until Maryland moves to phase three when larger religious gatherings are allowed.

“It just can’t happen because of the nature of what we as a church and the need that we meet in children’s program, in student programming and the interaction,” said Moss.

He says because of their big online presence they’re not in a hurry to reopen and that it’ll take a while before everyone gets comfortable around each other again.

“We’re not in a giant hurry, to be honest with you knowing that A, I can’t have churches as church should be, and B, we have doubled down investment on our online platform,” said Moss.

The Faith Baptist Church in Salisbury also tell us that they’ll continue to live stream their services.

On the other hand, Oak Ridge Baptist Church says they’re looking at potentially having a small audience for video streaming purposes in the near future.

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