This week saw the biggest step yet to reopening church buildings in Scotland as places of worship were permitted to reopen for corporate gatherings of up to 50 people from Wednesday 15th July.

This is very positive news and is earlier than originally planned by the Scottish Government. Following some significant engagement with the government (from the Evangelical Alliance and others) this brings the date for churches broadly in line with other indoor buildings in sectors such as hospitality, retail and culture (including museums and libraries). Indoor weddings are also now allowed.

Corporate gatherings, however, will be heavily restricted for some time with key elements required for reopening including:

  • Maximum 50 attendees at any one time (20 for weddings and funerals), to be reviewed at the end of July
  • Social distancing of households by 2m
  • Register taken of attendees and kept (by the church) for 21 days in case of outbreak
  • No congregational signing
  • No refreshments unless adhering to the hospitality guidance for cafes & restaurants

There are many questions to be answered as churches navigate this new phase in the Scottish Government route map and so we were delighted to host a Livestream Q&A with Professor Jason Leitch, National Clinical Director of the Scottish Government, to discuss how to safely reopen buildings.


We highly recommend highly watching this interview which covers social distancing, corporate worship, cleaning requirements, Sunday school & crèche groups, community use of buildings, advice for vulnerable groups, food and drink requirements and churches who use other buildings among topics.

This should be done in conjunction with reading the full Scottish Government guidance and the emerging from lockdown advice and FAQs available here on our coronavirus hub, all available below:

The Evangelical Alliance team in Scotland continue to engage with the Scottish Government on a weekly basis. If you have any questions or need further advice please contact us on scotland@​eauk.​org and we will be happy to help.