Los Angeles Archdiocese to drop mask, social distancing requirements for vaccinated parishioners

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles issued new instructions to reopen for indoor Mass starting next weekend and for most followers to return to the pews.

6/14/2021 3:48:00 AM

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles issued new instructions to reopen for indoor Mass starting next weekend and for most followers to return to the pews.

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles issued new instructions to reopen for indoor Mass starting next weekend and for most followers to return to the pews.

PrintThe Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles has issued new instructions to its more than 300 parishes to host full indoor masses without restrictions for vaccinated parishioners, such as social distancing and mask-wearing, beginning Saturday and June 20.

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Archbishop José Gomezsent out a letterover the weekend acknowledging “the significant progress in our fight against the pandemic” and established next weekend as homecoming dates for area Catholics.“I encourage the Catholic faithful of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles to return to in-person Sunday Mass and the celebration of the Sacraments, especially for those who are in good health,” Gomez wrote.

Beyond encouragement, Gomez also noted that as of next Saturday he would end dispensation from obligation to attend weekly Mass and services on holy days. Last year, Gomez allowed for the relaxing of mandatory churchgoing due to the pandemic.Advertisement headtopics.com

The new guidelinesapply to the archdiocese’s 288 parishes, 30 missions and chapels and 16 Eastern Rite Catholic churches in Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. The Los Angeles Archdiocese estimates about 4.35 million Catholics live within its boundaries.

Changes include the hosting of all liturgical events — weekday and Sunday masses, first communions, weddings and other services — to be held indoors with minimal restrictions.Masks will no longer be required for fully vaccinated individuals for all services. Those who are not vaccinated must wear masks indoors. According to the guidelines, however, parishes will not be allowed to check who is vaccinated.

Church employees and volunteers will be required to continue to wear masks and keep social distance.Familiar items such as collection baskets, bibles, hymnals and other aids will return to the pews, and singing is now encouraged.“We can look forward to better days in which we can actively live our faith as the body of Christ in our parish communities,” Gomez wrote.

Read more: Los Angeles Times »

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