I am sure you are well aware of the current world-wide pandemic involving the coronavirus (COVID-19). 

   I believe we have a responsibility to do our best to keep you healthy and safe; therefore, I have made an extraordinarily difficult decision.  I am heartbroken to inform you that as of today, March 13, 2020, I am cancelling ALL of the scheduled Official Visits--the one visit in March and all of the visits for the three months of April, May and June.  This decision is based on the World Health Organization (WHO) and CDC assessment that a high-risk group is older adults, in particular those suffering from serious chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, lung disease and having compromised immune systems (cancer treatment patients, etc.).  CDC has specifically stated that “…people over age 60 and people with chronic medical conditions—the two groups considered most vulnerable to severe pneumonia from Covid-19—to avoid crowds as much as possible.”  Unfortunately, my Sisters and Brothers, this describes the majority of Eastern Star members. 

The following Official Visits are cancelled: 

Louisiana Grand Chapter
Florida Grand Chapter
Connecticut Grand Chapter
Tennessee Grand Chapter
Alaska Subordinate Chapters
Massachusetts Grand Chapter
Maine Grand Chapter
New Jersey Grand Chapter
Puerto Rico Grand Chapter
Alberta Grand Chapter
Indiana Grand Chapter
South Carolina Grand Chapter
Washington State Grand Chapter
   I strongly urge all Jurisdictional leaders and members to be diligent in following the guidelines set forth by the WHO and CDC regarding the coronavirus.  I encourage you to seek out additional information on their websites and make responsible decisions for the health and safety of all members.

In friendship and love,
Marianne Shenefelt, MWGM
Henry Martin, MWGP