Guidelines on Partial Reopening of Parish Churches
Considering the latest development of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic in Macau, the Diocese has decided to partially reopen parish churches from 7th March 2020 with the following guidelines:
- Sunday Masses will remain suspended (including Anticipated Sunday Masses on Saturday evenings) until further notice.
- On weekdays parish churches will be open only for liturgies with a small number of participants, for private prayer, and small-scale religious activities, such as weekday Masses. Reception of groups of pilgrims from abroad will remain temporarily suspended.
- Everyone entering the churches must strictly comply with public epidemic prevention measures and instructions laid down by the parishes, for example wearing masks at all times, submitting to body temperature checks, use of liquid disinfectants, sitting at a considerable distance from others, complying with the instructions of staff regarding movement within the church premises, and observing the designated entry/exit, etc.
- Each parish should make arrangements for the Sacrament of Reconciliation (Confession) to be available for the faithful at suitable times. This should be celebrated in well ventilated places.
- Sunday school and catechism classes for children and youth in parishes remain suspended until the schools reopen.
- The Parish Priests shall determine the arrangements for adult catechesis.
- Faithful who feel indisposed or ill are advised not to go to church and should seek immediate medical attention.
- The faithful are encouraged to live out the spirit of Sunday observance by continuing watching the live broadcast of Masses at home, reading of scripture, spiritual communion, and other pious exercises such as the Rosary.
- The Diocese will continue to provide live broadcast of Sunday Masses online (Cantonese 09:15 / Portuguese 11:00 / English 17:00 www.catholic.org.mo), while live broadcast of Weekday Masses will discontinue from 7th March.
- All scheduled Public Masses in the chapels of Religious Communities and elderly homes remain suspended.
- The men’s and women’s Congregations, Societies of Apostolic Life, Personal Prelature, and other religious communities and centers are to arrange their own Masses, but they should not be open to the public.
- Please keep up with the latest announcements from the Diocese.
Given at the Chancery Office, 28th February 2020
Rev. Cyril Jerome LAW, Jr.