Wednesday, August 5, 2020
Home Vatican Updates 'Strict social distancing' shall be observed during Mass - CBCP

‘Strict social distancing’ shall be observed during Mass – CBCP

Here's a rundown for the do's and don'ts during Mass under the "new normal."

As more places in the country begin to lessen quarantine restrictions, the Church is also on its way to adopting the “new normal.”

The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) released guidelines and recommendations to parishes. This comes following the re-opening of the Baclaran Church.

While government regulations still prohibit mass gatherings, essential work gatherings, and religious activities may resume with strict social distancing. (Read: Here’s what you can expect on 2020 weddings, baptisms, Sunday Masses)

Social distancing

Social Distancing in Mass. The Diocese of Borongan in Eastern Samar has placed yellow tape on the church pews so churchgoers would be at arm’s length from each other, amid the spread of the new coronavirus in the country. (Photo by Alren Beronio / Contributor /

“Physical distancing will be among the new normal when public Masses resume as the country continues to battle the coronavirus crisis,” according to CBCP News. Worshippers are also required to wear face masks and foot baths will be installed. (Read: How is ‘safe malling’ ensured in SM stores and supermarkets?)

Here are the general guidelines as released by the CBCP:

  • There will be physical distancing markers on the benches/pews to indicate where the faithful could go and sit while inside the church.
  • The faithful are still encouraged to receive communion in the hand.
  • Refrain from holding hands when reciting the “Our Father” during Mass. Shaking hands during Sign of Peace is discouraged.
  • There will be thermal scanners for temperature check and foot baths at church entrances.
  • Priests are discouraged from wearing face masks or gloves in celebrating the Eucharist but instead told to remain more than one meter from the congregation during Mass.
  • Choir members will be reduced to keep physical distancing—it is advised that only a cantor should lead the assembly in the singing.
  • During the offertory, instead of passing baskets from person to person in each of the pews, designated boxes or collection points will be placed.
  • The elderly, children, and the sick are discouraged from attending Mass while there is still the threat of the virus.
  • Younger eucharistic ministers shall be trained since many of the lay ministers are elderly and vulnerable to infection.

SINGAPORE – APRIL 27: A member of the New Creation Church holds an ear thermometer used to check the body temperature of worshippers coming in for a Sunday prayer service April 27, 2003 in Singapore. (Photo by Paula Bronstein / Getty Images / TMJ4 WTMJ-TV Milwaukee)

For the full document of the CBCP Guidelines, click here.

Most Recent

5 Prayers of Blessing for Beloved Pets and Animals

True enough, having a pet in one's home can be life-changing. In fact, many of us already consider our furry friends as part of...

National Museum Launches ‘Lumad Mindanao’ E-Book for Buwan ng Wika

In celebration of Buwan ng Wika this August, the National Museum of the Philippines launched the free electronic book Lumad Mindanao that...

Pope Benedict XVI Has ‘Painful But Not Grave’ Illness – Vatican

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI is overcoming a "painful but not grave illness" and the illness is "not particularly worrying", the Vatican said...

‘SpaceX Flight’ Astronauts to Talk About Historic Mission on August 5

The human race is no stranger to space explorations—orbiting the earth, sending rovers to Mars, and even landing and walking on the moon! In...