Mormon church to require masks in temples amid COVID surge

FILE - In this Oct. 5, 2019, file photo, The Salt Lake Temple stands at Temple Square in Salt Lake City. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has announced that face masks will be required inside temples to limit the spread of COVID-19. Church leaders said Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2021, that masks will be required temporarily in an effort to keep temples open. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has announced that masks will be required inside temples to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Church leaders said Wednesday that masks will be required temporarily in an effort to keep temples open. The message is the latest in a series of statements from church leaders encouraging masking and vaccination efforts against COVID-19.

The church is based in Utah, where a summer surge of the virus among unvaccinated residents has grown while vaccination rates have slightly increased.

About 64% of Utah residents ages 12 and older were fully vaccinated as of Tuesday.

Categories: Coronavirus, National News