The following guidelines for memorials and funerals conducted by our Pastors and ministry staff will be implemented from 22 July to 18 August 2021:
A. Restrictions on Attendees
- Attendees at wakes and funerals including foot processions, shall be kept to 20 persons or fewer at any one time, depending on the safe capacity of the venue, whichever is lower. Pre-event testing is not required.
- Burials and cremations shall be attended by not more than 20 persons in total. The National Environment Agency will issue 20 entry passes for each cremation or burial application at Government-managed facilities.
- Religious workers, funeral staff, and persons involved in the conduct of live instrumental music should be kept to a minimum.
B. Group Size and Safe Distancing
- All attendees at funeral wakes, foot processions, burials, and cremations must wear a face mask. The prevailing group size of no more than 2 persons applies and there should not be mixing between groups. Please ensure that a safe distance of at least 1 metre is maintained between individuals and/or groups.
- Where seating at a table is provided, every chair for each table must be placed at least 1 metre away from any other chair for another table at all times. Tables and chairs must be arranged such that each table can accommodate no more than 2 individuals seated at the table, or no more than 2 individuals in each group separated by a space of at least 1 metre. There should be no mixing between groups.
C. Food and Beverages
- Attendees of funeral events should minimise their interaction with fellow attendees and leave the premises immediately after the event. No buffet set-up or reception with food and drinks is allowed. From 19 July 2021, provision of individually packed drinks (that is bottled/packet drinks) or individually packed titbits (such as peanuts, melon seeds) is disallowed at funeral wakes.
- Individually packed food/drink (for example, bento boxes) may be supplied to family members of the deceased who keep vigil for the duration of the funeral wake, and need to consume food at the premises. However, they should not interact with the other attendees when consuming their meals, and should consume their meals away from guests present at the funeral/wake event.
D. Live Performances
- Live instrumental music (non-wind) will be allowed at funeral events. The persons involved in the conduct of live instrumental music must wear a face mask and should minimise movement to ensure that the 1 metre safe distance can be adhered to at all times. They are not to participate in the foot processions. No other performances, such as singing, dancing, or variety acts, are allowed and there should be no sharing of equipment, such as musical instruments, microphones, or props. Live singing and playing of wind instruments (instruments which require intentional expulsion of air such as trumpets and conch shells) are not allowed.
- Hearse escort party (i.e. musical band and/or display contingent on foot and including vehicles ferrying banners, blankets, and/or flowers) is not allowed during the funeral event.
- Religious workers involved in the conduct of the religious rites, such as preachers, prayer leaders, or scripture leaders, will be required to wear face masks when performing their speaking duties (i.e. preaching or reciting of prayers) at funeral wakes and funeral services (i.e. cremation or burial services). They should largely remain at the spot from which they are speaking from, and must be at least 1 metre away from any other individual. Use of face shields in place of face masks is no longer allowed.
E. Temperature Screening
- Temperature screening is required for every individual entering the funeral event space and any person who is unwell must be turned away.
- TraceTogether-only SafeEntry check-in is required for funeral events and funeral parlours with wake halls. Visitors must perform SafeEntry check-in, via the TraceTogether app or token, to enable or facilitate contact tracing.
- Funeral parlours with wake halls are required to deploy SafeEntry Gateway as an additional SafeEntry check-in method. The SafeEntry Gateway enables contactless detection of both the TraceTogether mobile app and token, and serves as an additional means of SafeEntry check-in that is quicker and more seamless.
- Discourage vulnerable persons, such as the elderly, from attending these events to protect their health, and consider alternative solutions for them, such as live video screening instead.
- Funeral staff is encouraged to administer self-testing regime using the Antigen Rapid Test (ART) kits available for purchase over retail counters. Family members may also consider performing self-testing if they are worried that they may have COVID-19 and want to put their mind at ease. For more information on ART self-test kits, please visit moh.gov.sg/covid-19/selftestart.
The Homegoing Funeral Procedures Guide, designed for our cell leaders, seeks to provide assistance to the family of a cell member when a death occurs. In this guide, we highlight some scenarios you may encounter and provide the practical help you may need.
For more information, please contact your Team Pastor or the Church Office at 6424 9400.