GUIDELINES FOR ALL LITURGICAL CELEBRATIONS
(effective May 28, 2021)
Masks – Fully Vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask in any setting. In addition, fully vaccinated people do not need to supply proof of vaccination; parishes should not ask to see or check vaccination cards.
Masks – Unvaccinated. All present for the liturgy ages 5 and older must cover their mouth and nose with a mask when present for any Mass or liturgical celebration. Masks include disposable, surgical masks that are worn on one occasion. Individuals who cannot wear a mask due to health reasons must speak directly with their pastor to receive an exception.
Parishes are encouraged to continue the practice of offering hand sanitizer. All present are encouraged to use hand sanitizer, when it is available.
• Choirs may resume as of May 28, 2021.
• Hymnals and/or paper worship aids. Parishes may resume the use of hymnals and/or resume/continue the use of paper worship aids.
Nursery and cry rooms
Parishes may resume the use of a cry room and nursery with attention to proper cleaning.
Time between each Mass | Cleaning and Sanitizing the liturgical space(s)
While cleaning and sanitizing between each Mass is no longer required, parishes are encouraged to continue cleaning the church building and pews with regularity, similar to the practice(s) before COVID-19.
Children’s Liturgy of the Word
Parishes may resume the Children’s Liturgy of the Word.
Distribution of Holy Communion
Priest, deacons, seminarians, and lay ministers may distribute communion during the Mass.
Parishes should remove any table(s) used by a minister to stand behind for the distribution of communion.
Distribution of the cup
The distribution of the cup remains suppressed for deacons and the lay faithful until further notice.
Additional specifics during the celebration of Mass
Offertory. Parishes may resume the passing of the baskets for the collection, or may continue to suppress the passing of baskets for the collection. If suppressed, parishes may continue to place the basket(s) at the front of the church for the faithful to place their offertory in immediately before stepping forward to receive communion or place a basket at the exit of the church for people to utilize as they exit the church after Mass, with an Usher nearby to monitor the basket.
Procession of the offertory and gifts of bread and wine. Parishes may resume the procession of the offertory and gifts of bread and wine. However, parishes may also continue to place on the altar the items necessary for the Liturgy of the Eucharist before Mass begins, as has become the recent practice or placed on the credence table in the sanctuary and brought forward to the altar at the appropriate time.
Lord’s Prayer and Sign of Peace. Parishes are to continue the practice of refraining from holding hands during the Lord’s Prayer and shaking hands during the Sign of Peace (bow or verbal gesture is appropriate).
Bulletins. Parish may resume the use of printed bulletins. It is recommended that Ushers distribute these items and sanitize their hands before distributing bulletins.
Parishes are encouraged to continue livestreaming/recording Mass for the faithful unable to attend, e.g., those who have not yet received a vaccine; those uncomfortable returning to Mass with unmasked attendees; etc.
Effective May 28, 2021, there are no gathering limits before or after Mass.
Parishes are no longer required to limit restroom usage.
Baptismal fonts and holy water
Parish baptismal and holy water fonts—those with running water (living water) or still (non-moving water)—may be filled and used at this time at the discretion of the pastor. Parishes should clean and disinfect the font(s) following their practice(s) in place pre-COVID-19.
Sacrament of Reconciliation
Individual reception of the Sacrament of Reconciliation is available and no longer needs to maintain social distancing; parishes may return to their pre-COVID-19 customs and practices for the
Holy Hours of Adoration with Exposition
Parishes may resume the celebration of Holy Hours of Adoration with Exposition for the lay faithful following the parish’s pre-COVID-19 customs and practices.