Churches, places of worship can reopen along with wedding and funeral services

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Churches and other places of worship can reopen in Minnesota. 

While they can reopen, there are several restrictions in place to keep everyone safe. 

"We have missed you so very, very much," said Fr. John Paul Erickson, with Transfiguration Catholic Church. 

For the first time in more than two months, the pews were not empty Wednesday morning at the church. 

"When I heard you all sit down for the first time, I heard all the creaking of the pews, it's a very consoling sound, it's the sound of home," Fr. Erickson said. 

Spread out and many wearing masks, the congregation was much smaller, meeting the 25% or 250-person limit. Plus, all places of worship must follow more guidance from the state including that religious texts should be removed, singing is discouraged, and "vulnerable populations" are asked to participate in services remotely. 

"While we have done everything that we reasonably can do to make sure that you are safe here, we always know that there is some risk," Fr. Erickson said.

The governor's order is also letting weddings and funeral services resume at 25% capacity. One future bride already had to postpone her wedding because of the pandemic and she's worried she's going to have to do it again.

Breana Bauman and her fiance are set to get married in July. 

"Chaotic and stressful would be kind of an understatement," said Bauman, describing what the last couple months have been like. 

Even though her guest list wouldn't exceed the venue's 25%  limit, the governor's order doesn't include receptions. 

"That's not the day I dreamed of, just the ceremony, that's not what I spent a year planning," Bauman said. 

While she knows she could host a safe wedding, the uncertainty is the worst part. 

"It's so heartbreaking to try and keep your hopes up about your day and to keep having your heart broken over again and again," Bauman said. 

At 25% open, it's a step towards normal, but others realize we have a long way to go.

"There are so many other couples out there waiting for the same news that I am," Bauman said.