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Buffalo, NY | Local News, Weather, Traffic, Sports | WGRZ.com

Buffalo Diocese provides guidance to churches for limited re-opening

'Forward in Faith' will detail preparations and precautions parishes must follow to resume services and celebration of the Sacraments.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — In light of new guidance from the state regarding the resumption of religious services, the Diocese of Buffalo Thursday announced it has begun reaching out to its parishes on how to prepare.

Governor Cuomo said Wednesday that houses of worship could start to hold gatherings of no more than ten people, provided they meet the necessary criteria to protect the health of those taking part.

Large gatherings, such as church services, have been on hold since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

'Forward in Faith' will detail preparations and precautions parishes must follow to resume services and celebration of the Sacraments.

"We welcome the news that churches may begin welcoming back in small numbers those who are eager for the spiritual nourishment that our parishes provide,” said Reverend Seán Paul Fleming, the Diocese’s Director of Worship who has been leading the Diocesan working group on reopening plans. “We will be supporting our pastors throughout this process, mindful of the need to ensure that they do everything possible to mitigate the risks of the ongoing threat of the coronavirus, especially for those most vulnerable. Our many parishes across Western New York will need time to implement the necessary precautions and ensure that there is a consistent approach for safeguarding the health and safety of all who will now once again gather for liturgies and participation in the Church’s sacraments.”

The Diocese reminds those who, for whatever reason, choose not to attend services that there's still no obligation to attend Sunday mass and other Holy Days of Obligation. A list of masses that continue to be live-streamed can be found here.

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