Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research

The Takeaway: “Faith Communities Find Creative Ways to Congregate Amid Pandemic”

In response to COVID-19, the Senate passed a $2 trillion stimulus plan. Senators say it’s designed to help Americans and businesses struggling because of the coronavirus pandemic, but it is not a done deal just yet: The House will vote on the bill Friday.

Meanwhile, places of worship around the country are dealing with transitioning to creative ways of holding services that protect their congregations from the spread of the coronavirus. Some congregations are using drive-in services or experimenting with virtual reality, but most have moved to stream online. 

Leaders in the faith community are not only helping their congregations navigate the technological issues of attending virtual services, but also the emotional and spiritual challenges of losing jobs, taking care of sick family members and dealing with long periods of loneliness. 

For more on this, The Takeaway spoke to three faith leaders in the U.S.: Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum, senior rabbi at the Congregation Beit Simchat Torah; Rev. Dr. Jacqueline Lewis, senior minister at Middle Collegiate Church in Manhattan; and Imam Omar Suleiman, the founder and president of Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research.