COVID-19 Pandemic in the Diocese
- In the City of Calgary and the Town of Banff: If your parish follows the diocesan guidelines and requires parishioners to pre-register for Mass and have walk-ins only before Mass begins as doors are shut and locked as soon as Mass is underway (not leaving opportunity for people to just walk in during the Mass), churches in Calgary can continue the practise of letting the parishioners decide whether to wear the mask while stationary in the pews. The only time we require them to wear a mask is while on the Communion line for the reception of Holy Communion.
- During Mass
- The diocesan guidelines requires parishioners to pre-register for Mass and have walk-ins only before Mass begins as doors are shut and locked as soon as Mass is underway (not leaving opportunity for people to just walk in during the Mass). The only time we require them to wear a mask is while on the Communion line for the reception of Holy Communion, and when physical distancing is not possible.
- Priests are required to wear face coverings/masks before Mass, during the distribution of Holy Communion, and after the final blessing.
- Concelebration with priests, not of one’s cohort (Cohort = Pastor & Associate Pastor living in the same rectory), is discouraged at this time. Except for when the lector is at the ambo, the priest must be alone in the sanctuary.
- Lectors are permitted to remove their face covering/mask when proclaiming/reading at the ambo. Note: Refrain from touching the microphone.
- Since the dispensation from the Sunday Obligation still applies, anyone who has difficulty and issues with wearing a mask may want to consider staying home and staying safe at this time.
- During Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, Penance, Marriage and Anointing of the Sick: Priests must wear face coverings/masks when celebrating the Sacraments which will put them in close
proximity to the people.
- WEDDINGS AND FUNERALS – The City does not consider weddings and funerals as public events where parishioners are free to walk in during the ceremonies, therefore, our current diocesan guidelines and practise apply and do not need any modifications.
- Parish staff musts wear a face covering/mask when in common areas.
- Parish Office Space – In sections of the parish office that are not readily accessible to parishioners, staff do not have to wear masks while at work. They have to wear masks when entering any common areas in the church when the church is open and where they may encounter parishioners, i.e. narthex and hall ways, church nave, parish hall, public washrooms, public kitchens, rooms…
- Meetings – When meetings are not for the public, there is no need to wear masks as long as those attending are observing the required physical distance and the other safety precautions.
- Rule of thumb: People will be expected to wear a face covering in any part of an enclosed space to which the public can readily access. If the public does not have access to it, it will be exempt under the bylaw.
- The Bylaw requires business operators or owners to display messaging in public entryways of the business or vehicle. Download and print posters available in different languages from here: https://www.calgary.ca/csps/cema/covid19/support/business/face-covering-requirements.html
- Resource on Face Covering/Masks:
- Download signage: Calgary | Banff