BETHLEHEM — The Vestry at Christ Episcopal Church, 18 Main St. South, approved a plan to begin in-person worship again at the church.

The date selected to begin is Sunday, October 4, is the Feast of St. Francis.

The parish will observe the new common social practices during the pandemic: wearing masks, using hand-washing stations, sitting at least six feet apart and observing capacity guidelines established by the state.

Although there will be no communal hymn singing, the organist, Stephanie Biello of Southbury Music School will attend to play during the prelude, the offertory and the postlude. The sanctuary is newly cleaned and will be decorated in a festive manner. 

Following the service of Morning Prayer, which will begin at 10 a.m., the Rev. Thomas Word Peters will be available for the traditional Blessing of the Animals between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., which will take place in the church yard.

The entire Bethlehem community is invited to bring beloved pets for a special blessing. St. Francis is closely associated with animals and a sense of God’s creation in every living thing.

Christ Episcopal Church, founded in 1810, is located on the Green in Bethlehem in a building listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The website is

Those seeking additional information may contact Rev. Peters at or at 203-266-7698.

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