COVID-19 Archive Announcements

October 1, 2020

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

An additional update has been made to the outdoor events policy for U.S.G.L. to include provisions for indoor bathroom use.

Outdoor events “may utilize an indoor bathroom, so long as only one person is allowed to enter the building at a time, and sanitation equipment (spray, wipes, etc.) is provided. All attendees must be instructed to wear their mask at all times, to close the toilet lid before flushing and to sanitize surfaces after using“.

The full updated policy can be referenced on the COVID-19 information home page.

At this time indoor events remain prohibited. The COVID Response Team (CRT) would like to thank the bodies who have so far participated in the dispensation program for outdoor Mass and Minerval. Their contribution and practice in the field is contributing to our evolving policies as we navigate the ever changing COVID world. We are researching safe practices for indoor events and keeping an eye on the infection rates as we enter the cold and flu season in order to gauge the possibility of opening our doors wider, but have no immediate plans to accept indoor proposals.

At this time, we have received inquiries from seven bodies for 10 distinct events and have six approved events on the calendar.

Local Masters may request one-time dispensation for outdoor celebrations of the Gnostic Mass or Minerval initiations by contacting the CRT via planning@oto-usa.org. The team will communicate the process for submitting a proposal and work with masters one on one to ensure their outdoor facilities and COVID mitigation planning are sufficient.

We would also like to thank the Masters who contributed to last month’s Quarantine Activity Survey, distributed through the E.C. Virtual Valley. 63% of Master’s contributed to the survey and more information about the results is being prepared for the winter issue of Agape’.

Love is the law, love under will.

The U.S.G.L. COVID Response Team

September 7, 2020

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Please note that an updated version of the outdoor events policy for U.S.G.L., originally published July 5, 2020, has been posted below.

The U.S.G.L. COVID Response Team (CRT) has been working over the past months to develop protocols for Order events in the safest possible manner. At this time, we have determined that indoor events remain prohibited.

Local Masters may request one-time dispensation for outdoor celebrations of the Gnostic Mass or Minerval initiations by contacting the CRT via planning@oto-usa.org. The team will communicate the process for submitting a proposal and work with masters one one one to ensure their outdoor facilities and COVID mitigation planning is sufficient.

Love is the law, love under will.

U.S.G.L. COVID-19 Response Team

---

Amendment to Outdoor Events Policy

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Effective September 7, 2020 the outdoor events policy has been updated to change the language from “household” to “stay-at-home”*, and to add contact information for bodies of U.S.G.L. wishing to pursue dispensation for outdoor celebrations of the Gnostic Mass or the Minerval initiation.

Effective July 5, 2020, bodies of O.T.O. may meet under the following circumstances ONLY:

  • Outdoor

  • Masks required

  • Socially distanced (6+’ between Stay-At-Home units*)

  • No shouting or singing

  • No shared food, tools, utensils, game pieces, etc.

  • Hand sanitizer available

  • In compliance with state and local restrictions https://www.cdc.gov/publichealthgateway/healthdirectories/index.html

  • No events in red/”high risk” counties per the Global Epidemics site (link below)

  • People living/working in high risk/red counties per the Global Pandemics site

are not eligible to attend events

https://globalepidemics.org/key-metrics-for-covid-suppression/

*”Stay At Home” is generally defined as people who live in the same home and stay at home as much as possible who only leave for work and essential activities and are avoiding group/indoor gatherings. See your local regulations for definitions specific to your state/county.

Any outdoor rituals performed must conform to the above restrictions.

Additional dispensation is required for outdoor celebrations of the Gnostic Mass or the Minerval initiation. For more information contact planning@oto-usa.org.

More information:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/large-events/considerations-for-events-gatherings.html

As with all policies pertaining to local body activities, the Master is responsible for understanding and effectively enforcing this policy.

Love is the law, love under will.

August 6, 2020

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our communities, we would like to provide an update on the measures currently being taken to address the needs of our Order.

It has been one month since we released the announcement to allow for socially distanced outdoor events that meet safety protocols (see policy here). Several bodies have reported success in having outdoor meetings.

The U.S.G.L. COVID Response Team has been working over the last several weeks on creating viable protocols for a limited number of additional events and a process to grant dispensation for these events. Unfortunately, continued surges in the number of infections and deaths across our country show us that it is too high a risk to pursue a plan for indoor activities at this time.

Indoor O.T.O. events remain prohibited.

Meanwhile, our team will continue to work on indoor event protocols and processes in order to be prepared for such a time when we believe it appropriate to implement them.

Permission to meet outdoors, per the limitations outlined in last month’s announcement is still granted.

If you have any questions about what is permissible for outdoor events, please contact planning@oto-usa.org

Watch this page for further updates, we will be aiming for a monthly cadence.

Love is the law, love under will.

Sr Melissa Holm, U.S.G.L. COVID Response Team



July 5, 2020

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

As the impact of the Novel Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues to be felt around the world, we are working diligently to support the members and local bodies of U.S.G.L. For example, we are increasing our use of online resources and offering other support as we are able. We appreciate your patience and cooperation as we navigate the uncertainties of this time.

Many have rightly voiced concerns for the future, as the duration and outcome of this period of our history remain unclear. U.S.G.L. is creating a phased plan to reopen in-person events in the safest possible manner. We are evaluating the feasibility of reopening various types of activities and preparing the protocols necessary to do so safely. More information will be available in the coming months.

In the meantime, evidence has been presented by the CDC and other medical authorities that outdoor, masked, socially distanced events--while not without risk--do not show a significant impact on the number of positive cases.

Therefore, effective July 5, 2020 e.v., local bodies of O.T.O. may organize physical gatherings under the following conditions ONLY:

  • Events must be held outdoors

  • Masks must be properly worn by all attendees at all times during the events

  • Social distance (at least 6 feet between persons not of the same household) must be maintained

  • No shouting or loud singing is permitted

  • Door/gate latches and other commonly touched surfaces must be periodically sanitized

  • Consumption of food or drink requiring mask removal is not permitted (straws are OK)

  • Shared handling of objects (books, utensils, money, game pieces, cards, candles, furniture, etc.) is not permitted

  • Hand sanitizer must be made available to all attendees

  • Compliance with state and local restrictions is required https://www.cdc.gov/publichealthgateway/healthdirectories/index.html

  • Persons residing in high risk counties (shown as red on the map) per the Global Epidemics site are not eligible to attend

https://globalepidemics.org/key-metrics-for-covid-suppression/

Any outdoor rituals performed must conform to the above restrictions.

As with all else pertaining to their local body, the Master is responsible for understanding and effectively enforcing this policy.

This policy is subject to revision or revocation by U.S.G.L. at any time.


For more information:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/large-events/considerations-for-events-gatherings.html


Love is the law, love under will.

Sabazius X°