Notice to Parishioners: New By-Law Requires Mandatory Use of Masks at Church
As you may have heard in recent days, a new by-law has been passed that makes the use of masks or face coverings inside all public places mandatory. This includes churches and our own parish. I would ask that all those coming to church bring a mask or face covering and wear it upon entering the church.
I recognize that this may be an inconvenience yet I know that we are all committed to caring for our neighbour and those around us. While a number of restrictions have been lifted in recent days, we are still in the middle of a pandemic and need to take the appropriate steps to minimize any potential spread of Covid-19. So while the Archdiocese of Toronto had highly recommended wearing a mask while in church and I know that most of you have been doing so, it is now a by-law that we must follow.
- Priests do not need to wear masks in the sanctuary while celebrating Mass but should ensure they are wearing a mask when distributing Holy Communion and any other setting where they are in close proximity (less than 2m/6 ft) to parishioners. Lectors should remove masks to proclaim the Word of God.
- Parishes are not required to distribute masks
- Exceptions to the by-law include people who cannot wear a mask for medical reasons (trouble breathing or unable to remove a mask without assistance) and children under two years old. Proof of a medical condition is not required.
Thank you in advance for your co-operation as we do all that we can to take care of one another and keep our community safe and healthy.