Advertisement

Do we have Mass? Coronavirus closures and dispensations in US dioceses

shutterstock 44920414 Stock photo. Via Shutterstock. / null

This story is developing and will be regularly updated.

Last updated: 4:30pm, Wednesday, June 9, 2021

In response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, bishops across the country have taken steps to curtail the spread of the illness, and many dioceses have announced restrictions on public Mass and other liturgies. 

Is Mass canceled in your diocese?

Below is CNA’s rolling coverage of restrictions and special measures taken by dioceses, organized by province, and the status of public Masses and school closings. This list will be updated regularly as news comes in, but check with your diocese for any to-the-minute changes where you live.

To let CNA know about closings or dispensations in your diocese, email us here. Try to include a link to official notification if you can.

Province of Anchorage (Archdiocese of Anchorage, Dioceses of Juneau, and Fairbanks):

The Archdiocese of Anchorage has suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Juneau has suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Fairbanks has suspended public Masses.

Province of Atlanta (Archdiocese of Atlanta, Dioceses of Savannah, Charleston, Raleigh, Charlotte):  

Archbishop Gregory Hartmayer of Atlanta announced April 28 that the general dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass will expire May 22. He added that "one does not have an obligation to attend Mass on Sunday in the following circumstances": You are ill or you have a health condition that would be significantly compromised if you were to contract a communicable illness (i.e., you have underlying conditions or are in a high-risk category); you are experiencing flu-like symptoms; you have been exposed to someone who has tested positive or you have reason to think you might be asymptomatic of a contagious illness; you care for the sick, homebound, or infirm; you are pregnant; you are 65 years of age or older (per the CDC’s recommendation of high-risk individuals); you cannot attend Mass through no fault of your own (e.g., no Mass is offered, you are infirm, your ride did not show up, the church was at capacity); or you have significant fear or anxiety of becoming ill by being at Mass."

The Diocese of Savannah has suspended public Masses.

Advertisement

Bishop Robert Guglielmone of Charleston announced May 2 that public Masses will resume May 11.

The Diocese of Charlotte has suspended all public Masses or limited them to no more than 10 people. Catholics are encouraged to check with parishes for updates.

All public "weekend Masses in the Diocese of Raleigh are suspended until further notice."

Province of Baltimore (Archdiocese of Baltimore, Dioceses of Wheeling-Charleston, Wilmington, Richmond, Arlington): 

More in US

Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore announced June 2 that the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be reinstated June 27, and that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus, another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Bishop Michael Burbidge of Arlington announced June 2 that the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be reinstated June 27, and that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus, another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Bishop Barry Knestout of Richmond announced June 2 that the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be reinstated June 27, and that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus, another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Bishop Mark Brennan of Wheeling-Charleston announced June 2 that the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be reinstated June 27, and that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus, another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions." He added that "among many situations that could impede your going to Mass, you may be taking care of a sick person or fear bringing home an infection from Mass; you may be traveling a long distance on Sunday (perhaps 100 miles); you may be required to work on Sunday and no local Mass fits into your schedule. In these and similar situations, you are excused from taking part in Mass" on Sundays and Holy Days.

Bishop William Malooly, Apostolic Administrator of Wilmington, announced June 2 that the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be reinstated June 27, and that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus, another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Province of Boston (Archdiocese of Boston, Dioceses of Burlington, Fall River, Manchester, Portland, Springfield Ma., Worcester):

Sean Cardinal O'Malley, Archbishop of Boston, announced June 9 that the dispensation from the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be lifted June 20. He added that the obligation "does not apply to those who are ill; those who have been recently exposed to COVID or any other communicable illness; those who are confined to their homes or to hospitals or other facilities due to illness, infirmity, frailty, or age; and those who are not yet able to be vaccinated, due to age or any health consideration."

(Story continues below)

The Diocese of Burlington has suspended public Masses.

Bishop Edgar da Cunha of Fall River announced June 8 that the dispensation from the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be lifted June 20. He added that the obligation "does not apply to those who are ill; those who have been recently exposed to COVID or any other communicable illness; those who are confined to their homes or to hospitals or other facilities due to illness, infirmity, frailty, or age; and those who are not yet able to be vaccinated, due to age or any health consideration."

Bishop Peter Libasci of Manchester announced June 8 that the dispensation from the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be lifted June 20. He added that the obligation "does not apply to those who are ill; those who have been recently exposed to COVID or any other communicable illness; those who are confined to their homes or to hospitals or other facilities due to illness, infirmity, frailty, or age; and those who are not yet able to be vaccinated, due to age or any health consideration." He added that "while it is true that illness, infirmityor truly serious reasons may impede and therefore always dispense us of our obligation to come to Church for Mass, any casual absence from Mass without serious reason carries the burden of a willful sin against God and neighbor and must be brought to Confession as soon as possible."

Bishop Robert Deeley of Portland on June 9 lifted the general dispensation from the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days, effective June 20. The diocese stated that "as is always the case, the obligation does not apply to those who have serious reasons for not attending Mass like individuals who are seriously ill, caring for an ill person, homebound, suffering from a compromised health condition, or otherwise unable to attend Mass."

Bishop William Byrne of Springfield announced June 9 that the dispensation from the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be lifted June 20. He added that the obligation "does not apply to those who are ill; those who have been recently exposed to COVID or any other communicable illness; those who are confined to their homes or to hospitals or other facilities due to illness, infirmity, frailty, or age; and those who are not yet able to be vaccinated, due to age or any health consideration."

Bishop Robert McManus of Worcester restored the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days effective June 6.

Advertisement

Province of Chicago (Archdiocese of Chicago, Dioceses of Belleville, Joliet, Peoria, Rockford, Springfield in Illinois):

The Archdiocese of Chicago has suspended all public liturgies and closed all archdiocesan schools “until further notice.” 

Bishop Thomas Paprocki of Springfield in Illinois withdrew, by a March 15 decree, the general dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation effective April 11, while maintaining a particular dispensation for those 65 years of age or older; those at risk for severe illness due to underlying medical conditions as described by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; those who care for the sick, homebound, or infirmed; those women who are pregnant; and those who cannot be accommodated at Mass because the church was at safe-distancing capacity. He added that those who are currently ill; those who have a fever or exhibit flu-like symptoms; and those who have good reason to think they might be asymptomatic of a contagious illness ( e.g., those who were in recent contact with someone who tested positive for a contagious illness such as COVID or influenza) do not need a dispensation, but are morally excused from attending Mass, and in fact are morally obliged not to attend Mass so as to avoid putting others at risk. Bishop Paprocki also wrote that "in those cases where a person may not be dispensed or excused from the obligation to attend Mass in one of the above categories, but may have significant fear or anxiety of becoming ill by being at Mass, for example, those who for good reason have not received the COVID vaccine, such persons should speak to their parish priest, who may grant a dispensation in individual cases per canon 1245 of the Code of Canon Law and faculty 1709.1 of Book IV, Diocesan Policies and Procedures."

The Diocese of Rockford has suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Joliet suspended weekend Masses for "the time being." Daily Masses and funerals can continue.

The Diocese of Peoria has suspended all public liturgies.

The Diocese of Belleville has suspended all public liturgies.

Province of Cincinnati (Archdiocese of Cincinnati, Dioceses of Cleveland, Columbus, Steubenville, Toledo, Youngstown):

Archbishop Dennis Schnurr of Cincinnati announced May 13 that the general obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation will be reinstated June 6. He added that "as has always been the case, those who have a serious reason are exempt from attending Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation ... This includes those who are ill, have significant health risk factors or care for someone who is immuno-compromised or ill, as well as those who have significant fear or anxiety of contracting the coronavirus in a large group of persons."

Bishop Edward Malesic of Cleveland announced May 13 that the general obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation will be reinstated June 6. He added that "as has always been the case, those who have a serious reason are exempt from attending Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation ... This includes those who are ill, have significant health risk factors or care for someone who is immuno-compromised or ill, as well as those who have significant fear or anxiety of contracting the coronavirus in a large group of persons."

Bishop Robert Brennan of Columbus announced May 13 that the general obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation will be reinstated June 6. He added that "as has always been the case, those who have a serious reason are exempt from attending Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation ... This includes those who are ill, have significant health risk factors or care for someone who is immuno-compromised or ill, as well as those who have significant fear or anxiety of contracting the coronavirus in a large group of persons."

Bishop Jeffrey Monforton of Steubenville announced May 13 that the general obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation will be reinstated June 6. He added that "as has always been the case, those who have a serious reason are exempt from attending Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation ... This includes those who are ill, have significant health risk factors or care for someone who is immuno-compromised or ill, as well as those who have significant fear or anxiety of contracting the coronavirus in a large group of persons."

Bishop Daniel Thomas of Toledo announced May 13 that the general obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation will be reinstated June 6. He added that "as has always been the case, those who have a serious reason are exempt from attending Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation ... This includes those who are ill, have significant health risk factors or care for someone who is immuno-compromised or ill, as well as those who have significant fear or anxiety of contracting the coronavirus in a large group of persons."

Bishop David Bonnar of Youngstown announced May 13 that the general obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation will be reinstated June 6. He added that "as has always been the case, those who have a serious reason are exempt from attending Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation ... This includes those who are ill, have significant health risk factors or care for someone who is immuno-compromised or ill, as well as those who have significant fear or anxiety of contracting the coronavirus in a large group of persons."

Province of Denver (Archdiocese of Denver, Dioceses of Cheyenne, Colorado Springs, Pueblo):

The Archdiocese of Denver announced April 6 that the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be restored May 23. It added that that anyone with a “serious reason” or “grave cause” is excused from the obligation, and that in the case of this pandemic, “serious reason” and “grave cause” would include anyone who is sick, symptomatic, or has been recently exposed to the coronavirus; anyone with significant health risk factors that requires them to avoid public spaces, or if you care for someone with significant risk factors; and anyone who cannot attend Mass through no fault of their own, for example, if a parish has reached capacity.

Bishop Michael Sheridan of Colorado Springs announced April 6 that the dispensation from Sunday Mass attendance will be lifted effective May 23. He added that "as has always been the case, individuals who are unable to attend Mass due to serious illness or advanced age are dispensed from the Sunday obligation."

The Diocese of Pueblo announced April 6 that the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be restored May 23, and that anyone with a “serious reason” or “grave cause” is excused from the obligation, listing as criteria under which one would remain dispensed: if you are ill or your health condition would be significantly compromised if you were to come in contact with someone who might be sick, for example, if you have an underlying condition or are in a high-risk category; if you exhibit flu-like symptoms; if you have good reason to thing you might be asymptomatic of a contagious illness, for example is you we in recent contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19 or the flu; if you care for the sick, homebound, or infirm and unable to leave them unattended; if you are pregnant; if you are 65 years of age or older (per the CDC’s recommendation of high-risk individuals); or if you cannot attend Mass through no fault of your own, for example, if no Mass were offered, you are sick, or, while wanting to go, you are prevented for some reason you cannot control such as your ride does not show up, the church is at capacity.

Public celebration of the Mass has been suspended in the Diocese of Cheyenne

Province of Detroit ( Archdiocese of Detroit, Dioceses of Gaylord, Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Lansing, Marquette, Saginaw): 

Archbishop Allen Vigneron of Detroit wrote to the faithful of his local Church Feb. 9 that the general dispensation from the Sunday obligation will be extended until March 13. Particular dispensations will then be granted to those are ill or whose health condition would be significantly compromised if they were to contract a communicable illness (i.e., those with underlying conditions or in a high-risk category); those exhibiting flu-like symptoms; those who have good reason to think they might be asymptomatic of a contagious illness (e.g., they were in recent contact with someone who tested positive for a contagious illness such as COVID or influenza); those who care for the sick, homebound, or infirmed; pregnant women; those 65 or older; those who cannot attend Mass through no fault of their own (e.g., no Mass is offered, they are infirmed, or, while wanting to go, they are prevented for some reason you cannot control (e.g., their ride did not show up, the church was at capacity)); and those who have significant fear or anxiety of becoming ill by being at Mass.

Bishop Earl Boyea of Lansing announced April 30 that public Masses will be restored May 18, with continuing measures to protect public health.

The Diocese of Gaylord has suspended public Masses until April 6.

The Diocese of Saginaw has suspended all public Masses until April 5.

Bishop Paul Bradley of Kalamazoo announced May 14 that public Masses will resume May 27.

The Diocese of Grand Rapids has suspened public Masses, and closed Catholic schools, through the month of March.

Province of Dubuque (Archdiocese of Dubuque, Dioceses of Davenport, Des Moines, Sioux City): 

The Archdicoese of Dubuque has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Sioux City has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Des Moines has canceled all public Masses.

The Diocese of Davenport has suspended public Masses.

Province of Galveston-Houston (Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, Dioceses of Austin, Beaumont, Brownsville, Corpus Christi, Tyler, Victoria): 

The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston has suspended public Masses.

In the Diocese of Victoria, public Mass is suspended.

The Diocese of Austin suspended public Masses.

Bishop Joseph Strickland of Tyler announced March 3 that "the general dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Day of Obligation that I issued in March of 2020 is withdrawn as of March 10, 2021." He added, "One does not have an obligation to attend Mass if you are sick or in a high-risk category for COVID-19; if you were recently in contact with a sick person; if you care for the sick or homebound; if you are pregnant; or if you have a significant fear or anxiety of becoming ill by being at Mass."

Catholics in the Diocese of Brownsville has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Corpus Christi has suspended all public Masses.

Province of Hartford (Archdiocese of Hartford, Dioceses of Bridgeport, Norwich, Providence): 

Archbishop Leonard Blair of Hartford announced May 10 that the general dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation will end May 22. He added that "some persons may deeply desire to return to Mass in person but are prevented from doing so for legitimate reasons", which "include suffering from serious pre-existing conditions that may make a person more susceptible to falling ill from COVID-19; being ill and homebound or being a caregiver in close contact with someone who is; having tested positive for any contagious disease, including COVID-19; being in quarantine due to exposure to any contagion or residing with someone who is quarantined. For anyone facing these circumstances, please remember the Lord will never invite you to do something that poses a danger to oneself or others."

Bishop Frank Caggiano of Bridgeport announced May 10 that the general dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation will end May 22. He added that "some persons may deeply desire to return to Mass in person but are prevented from doing so for legitimate reasons", which "include suffering from serious pre-existing conditions that may make a person more susceptible to falling ill from COVID-19; being ill and homebound or being a caregiver in close contact with someone who is; having tested positive for any contagious disease, including COVID-19; being in quarantine due to exposure to any contagion or residing with someone who is quarantined. For anyone facing these circumstances, please remember the Lord will never invite you to do something that poses a danger to oneself or others."

Bishop Michael Cote of Norwich announced May 10 that the general dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation will end May 22. He added that "some persons may deeply desire to return to Mass in person but are prevented from doing so for legitimate reasons", which "include suffering from serious pre-existing conditions that may make a person more susceptible to falling ill from COVID-19; being ill and homebound or being a caregiver in close contact with someone who is; having tested positive for any contagious disease, including COVID-19; being in quarantine due to exposure to any contagion or residing with someone who is quarantined. For anyone facing these circumstances, please remember the Lord will never invite you to do something that poses a danger to oneself or others."

The Diocese of Providence has suspended all public Masses.

Province of Indianapolis (Archdiocese of Indianapolis, Dioceses of Evansville, Fort Wayne-South Bend, Gary, Lafayette):

The Archdiocese of Indianapolis and its suffragans announced Oct. 19 that the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation is being extended until further notice.

Province of Kansas City (Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas, Dioceses of Dodge City, Salina, Wichita): 

Public Masses in the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas and the Dioceses of Dodge City and Wichita are suspended.

Bishop Gerald Vincke of Salina wrote in an April 27 decree that "the dispensation from the sacred obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation shall be lifted" May 23.

Province of Los Angeles (Archdiocese of Los Angeles, Dioceses of Fresno, Monterey, Orange, San Bernardino, San Diego): 

Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles announced May 27 that public Masses can resume June 3.

The Diocese of Monterey has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Orange has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of San Bernardino has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of San Diego suspended all public Masses March 15.

The Diocese of Fresno has suspended public Masses.

Province of Louisville (Archdiocese of Louisville, Dioceses of Covington, Knoxville, Lexington, Memphis, Nashville, Owensboro): 

Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville announced May 11 that public Masses may begin May 20, and that "I am issuing a dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation for the Archdiocese of Louisville, until further notice."

The Diocese of Covington will suspend public Masses effective March 20.

The Diocese of Lexington has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Owensboro has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Memphis has suspended public Masses until further notice.

The Diocese of Nashville has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Knoxville has suspended all public Masses.

Province of Miami (Archdiocese of Miami, Dioceses of Orlando, Palm Beach, Pensacola-Tallahassee, St. Augustine, St. Petersburg, Venice): 

Public Masses in the Archdiocese of Miami and the Dioceses of Orlando, Palm Beach, St. Augustine, and Venice in Florida have been suspended.

Bishop William Wack of Pensacola-Tallahassee announced May 1 that public Masses will resume May 6, with the general dispensation from the Sunday obligation remaining.

Bishop Gregory Parkes of St. Petersburg announced March 30 that the general obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation is to be reinstated May 23. He added that one does not have an obligation to attend Mass in the following circumstances: you are ill, or your health condition would be significantly compromised if you were to contract an infectious illness (i.e., you have underlying conditions or are in a high-risk category); You exhibit flu-like symptoms; you have good reason to think you might be asymptomatic of a contagious illness (e.g., you were in recent contact with someone who tested positive for a contagious illness such as COVID or influenza); you care for the sick, homebound, or infirmed; you are pregnant; those 65 years of age or older; you cannot attend Mass through no fault of your own; if you have significant and reasonable fear or anxiety of becoming ill by being at Mass.

Province of Milwaukee (Archdiocese of Milwaukee, Dioceses of Green Bay, La Crosse, Madison, Superior): 

Archbishop Jerome Listecki of Milwaukee expired the dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days on Sept. 14. He wrote that "If a person is ill, especially during this pandemic, they should remain at home. Likewise, if a person is at risk because of age, underlying medical conditions or a compromised immune system, one would be excused from the obligation. If a person is caring for a sick person, even if they are not sick, they would be excused from the obligation out of charity. Fear of getting sick, in and of itself, does not excuse someone from the obligation. However, if the fear is generated because of at-risk factors, such as pre-existing conditions, age or compromised immune systems, then the fear would be sufficient to excuse from the obligation."

Bishop Donald Hying of Madison issued a decree Sept. 2 revoked the dispensation issued in March which excused the faithful of the diocese from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and other holy days of obligation, effective Sept. 27. At the same time he dispensed from the obligation, as long as the reason persists, "those for whom, in their own prudent and prayerful judgment, attending Mass would pose greater than normal risk, either to themselves, to their families and others with whom they have contact, or to those attending Mass, whether the source of the additional risk is their age, health, possible recent exposure, difficulty in observing social distancing guidelines and other hygienic measures, or any other cause, gauged in proportion to the gravity of the obligation in question", and "those who attempt to attend Mass but, due to the limitations on church capacity imposed by ecclesiastical or civil authority, are either unable to enter the church or else upon arrival voluntarily abstain from doing so in order that others may attend, even if it would be possible to attend another Mass without extreme difficulty".

Bishop David Ricken of Green Bay issued a decree dated Oct. 2 re-instating the dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass, effective Oct. 5 and until further notice.

The Diocese of La Crosse has suspended public Masses, effective March 20.

The Diocese of Superior has suspended public Masses.

Province of Mobile (Archdiocese of Mobile, Dioceses of Biloxi, Birmingham, Jackson):

Archbishop Thomas Rodi of Mobile has suspended all public Masses through April 18.

The Diocese of Jackson has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Biloxi has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Birmingham on May 11 permitted public Masses beginning May 13. All the Roman Catholic faithful who reside in the diocese are dispensed from the obligation of assisting at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days through Jan. 10, 2021.

Province of New Orleans (Archdiocese of New Orleans, Dioceses of Alexandria La., Baton Rouge, Houma-Thibodaux, Lafayette La., Lake Charles, Shreveport): 

In the Archdiocese of New Orleans, public Masses are suspended.

In the Diocese of Baton Rouge, public Masses are suspended.

The Diocese of Alexandria has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Lafayette, La., has suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Lake Charles has suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux has suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Shreveport has suspended all public Masses.

Province of New York (Archdiocese of New York, Dioceses of Albany, Brooklyn, Buffalo, Ogdensburg, Rochester, Rockville Centre, Syracuse): 

The Archdiocese of New York has suspended public Masses. Churches will remain open for private prayer. Elementary schools in the archdiocese of New York are closed.

The Diocese of Brooklyn announced May 21 that the dispensation from the obligation to assist at Mass will be lifted June 6, but that "those who are feeling ill and those caring for the sick, continue to be dispensed from the obligation to attend Mass."

The Diocese of Albany suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Buffalo suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Syracuse suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Rockville Centre suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Rochester has suspended public Masses and closed schools through the end of March.

In the Diocese of Ogdensburg, all public Masses are suspended.

Province of Newark (Archdiocese of Newark, Dioceses of Camden, Metuchen, Paterson, Trenton): 

Joseph Cardinal Tobin, Archbishop of Newark, wrote May 20 that the dispensation of the Sunday and Holy Days Mass obligation will be lifted beginning June 6. He added that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus or another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Bishop James Checchio of Metuchen wrote May 20 that the dispensation of the Sunday and Holy Days Mass obligation will be lifted beginning June 6. He added that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus or another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Bishop David O'Connell of Trenton wrote May 20 that the dispensation of the Sunday and Holy Days Mass obligation will be lifted beginning June 6. He added that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus or another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Bishop Dennis Sullivan of Camden wrote May 20 that the dispensation of the Sunday and Holy Days Mass obligation will be lifted beginning June 6. He added that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus or another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Bishop Kevin Sweeney of Paterson wrote May 20 that the dispensation of the Sunday and Holy Days Mass obligation will be lifted beginning June 6. He added that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus or another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Province of Oklahoma City (Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, Dioceses of Little Rock, Tulsa) : 

Archbishop Paul Coakley of Oklahoma City announced April 12 that the dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be lifted effective April 24. The archdiocese issued guidelines saying that "anyone who is unable to receive a COVID vaccine at this time (e.g., women who are pregnant)" is dispensed. In addition, those are those who are ill; those who are caregivers for someone who is ill; the homebound; and those who are vulnerable due to age, health or severe anxiety about becoming ill are dispensed; which dispensations were in place prior to the pandemic.

Bishop David Konderla of Tulsa announced May 14 that the Sunday obligation will be restored May 23. Exemptions or excuses for the obligation remain under the normal conditions, he said, and "anyone who is sick or is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should not attend Mass."

The Diocese of Little Rock will suspend all public Masses from the weekend of March 21-22, “except for small groups at the discretion of the priest.” Churches will remain open during daylight hours with Eucharistic Adoration.

Province of Omaha (Archdiocese of Omaha, Dioceses of Grand Island, Lincoln): 

Archbishop George Lucas of Omaha wrote March 31 the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and holy days will be restored May 23. He added that “those who are prevented from attending [Mass] due to advanced age, sickness, disability or some other serious reason are excused” from the obligation, and that “for the foreseeable future, those who feel they are at heightened risk of contracting or communicating COVID-19 are excused.”

Bishop James Conley of Lincoln announced March 31 the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and holy days will be restored May 23. Bishop Conley explained that the obligation does not apply “when one is physically or morally prevented from attending,” giving the examples of bodily illness or having no means of reasonable transportation as ways of being physically prevented, and a parent taking care of a sick child, or if military personnel would compromise their duty for the common good, as moral preventions. Regarding Covid-19 in particular, he said the obligation does not apply if you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or have good reason to believe that you may have contracted it; if you are ill or have a condition that would seriously compromise your health if you contracted COVID-19; if you care for the sick, homebound, or infirmed and have a compelling reason for believing that you would infect them by going to Mass; if you have significant and grave fear or anxiety of becoming ill by being at Mass; or if you are elderly or pregnant and have a serious reason to believe you would put yourself or your child at risk by attending Mass.

Bishop Joseph Hanefeldt of Grand Island wrote March 31 that the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and holy days will be restored May 23. He said that the obligation “extends to all baptized Catholics who are of able body and sound mind,” but that some “may be excused from the obligation to attend Mass due to advanced age, sickness, disability or some other serious reason.”

Province of Philadelphia (Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Dioceses of Allentown, Altoona-Johnstown, Erie, Greensburg, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, Scranton): 

Public Masses in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and the Dioceses of Allentown, Altoona-Johnstown, Erie, Greensburg, Harrisburg, and Scranton are suspended.

The Diocese of Pittsburgh announced May 14 that ferial Masses will resume June 1, and Sunday Masses June 6.

Ukrainian Province of Philadelphia (Ukrainian Archeparchy of Philadelphia, Ukrainian Eparchies of Saint Josaphat in Parma, Saint Nicholas of Chicago, Stamford):

All public Divine Liturgies are suspended.

Ruthenian Province of Pittsburgh (Ruthenian Archeparchy of Pittsburgh, Ruthenian Eparchies of the Holy Protection of Mary of Phoenix; Parma; and Passaic):

Bishop Kurt Burnette of the Ruthenian Eparchy of Passaic wrote May 20 that the dispensation of the Sunday and Holy Days Mass obligation will be lifted beginning June 6. He added that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus or another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Province of Portland in Oregon (Archdiocese of Portland, Dioceses of Baker, Boise, Great Falls-Billings, Helena):

The Archdiocese of Portland in Oregon announced May 6 that public Masses will resume May 9, with social distancing and no more than 25 persons in attendance.

The Diocese of Baker suspended public Masses.

Bishop Michael Warfel of Great Falls-Billings wrote April 23 that parish Masses may resume April 26 with reduced capacity, social distancing, and the determinations of local governments. He added that the Sunday obligation continues to be suspended.

Bishop Austin Vetter of Helena wrote April 23 that parish Masses may resume April 26 with reduced capacity, social distancing, and the determinations of local governments. He added that the Sunday obligation continues to be suspended.

Province of St. Louis (Archdiocese of St. Louis, Dioceses of Jefferson City, Kansas City-St. Joseph, Springfield-Cape Girardeau): 

The Archdiocese of St. Louis has suspended public Masses.

In the Diocese of Jefferson City, public Masses are suspended.

Bishop James Johnston of Kansas City-St. Joseph decreed May 20 that effective June 1, "the general dispensation ... from the obligation to participate in Mass on Sundays and holy days of obligation is hereby abrogated. Individuals who are symptomatic, or who have been advised by medical doctors to avoid public gatherings, or who are otherwise ill or homebound, as well as their caregivers, are already dispensed from the obligation to attend Mass".

The Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau has suspended all public Masses.

Province of St. Paul and Minneapolis (Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis, Dioceses of Bismarck, Crookston, Duluth, Fargo, New Ulm, Rapid City, Saint Cloud, Sioux Falls, Winona): 

The Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of New Ulm has suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of Winona-Rochester suspended public Masses.

The Diocese of St. Cloud has has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Crookston has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Duluth has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Rapid City has suspended all public Masses.

Bishop Donald DeGrood of Sioux Falls announced Aug. 10 that beginning Aug. 17 the dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass will "apply only to those at increased risk for severe illness and those responsible for their care." For the purpose of the canonical dispensation he wrote that "those at increased risk for severe illness" "is exclusive to those aged 65 and older and those with the following medical conditions: cancer; chronic kidney disease; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant; obesity (body mass index of 30 or higher); serious heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies; sickle cell disease; and type 2 diabetes mellitus."

Bishop John Folda of Fargo announced April 30 that public Masses will resume May 4. The obligation to assist at Mass is dispensed until further notice, and social distancing practices will limit the number of attendees.

Bishop David Kagan of Bismarck announced April 30 that public Masses will resume May 6. Social distancing is to be observed, and "the dispensation from the obligation to attend and participate at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days remains in effect until further notice for all who may be hesitant or afraid at this time to be in larger gatherings."

Province of San Antonio (Archdiocese of San Antonio, Dioceses of Amarillo, Dallas, El Paso, Fort Worth, Laredo, Lubbock, San Angelo): 

In the Archdiocese of San Antonio public Masses are suspended.

The Diocese of Dallas has suspended public Masses until March 30.

In the Diocese of Fort Worth, public Masses are suspended. Masses will be celebrated at their regularly scheduled times.

After those Masses, will Holy Communion "be distributed outside of church in designated spaces after Mass for those who are present in their cars or separated by a safe distance. It is to be distributed in an open space with safe social distancing, in the hand, and not through a car window."

"If inclement weather prohibits this, Holy Communion may be distributed in the church with safe social distancing and without crowding with due respect for the limits on gathering size. Because of the extraordinary circumstances in which we are called to minister, I am requiring that Holy Communion be received in the hand to prevent the spread of contagion," Bishop Michael Olson wrote March 19.

"I am asking that my priests and deacons over the age of 60 refrain from distributing Holy Communion for the sake of their health. They are free to exercise their own good judgment in this regard."

Bishop Robert Coerver of Lubbock on April 22 permitted outdoor Masses observing social distancing guidelines. He added that the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days is dispensed until further notice.

The Diocese of San Angelo has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of El Paso is "in the process of weighing options."

Public Masses have been suspended in the Diocese of Laredo.

Province of San Francisco (Archdiocese of San Francisco, Dioceses of Honolulu, Las Vegas, Oakland, Reno, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Jose, Santa Rosa, Stockton): 

The Archdiocese of San Francisco has suspended public Masses, in response to a "shelter in place" order impacting much of the Bay Area.

The Diocese of Oakland has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Salt Lake City has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of San Jose has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Honolulu has suspended public Masses.

Bishop George Thomas of Las Vegas on April 24 extended the suspension of public Masses until May 31, and dispensed the faithful and those visiting the diocese from their Sunday Mass obligation through May 30.

The Diocese of Sacramento has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Stockton has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Santa Rosa has suspended all public Masses.

The Diocese of Reno has suspended all public Masses.

Province of Santa Fe (Archdiocese of Santa Fe, Dioceses of Gallup, Las Cruces, Phoenix, and Tucson): 

Archbishop John Wester of Santa Fe announced Oct. 22 that public Masses will be suspended beginning Oct. 26. Catholic schools may remain open.

The Diocese of Phoenix has suspended public Masses.

Bishop Peter Baldacchino of Las Cruces resumed public Masses April 15, subject to New Mexico's civil limit of five persons at a gathering and "while maintaining all current health precautions set forth by the state and federal government.”

Bishop Edward Weisenburger of Tucson announced July 1 that public Masses were again being suspended, effective immediately.

The Diocese of Gallup has suspended all public Masses.

Province of Seattle (Archdiocese of Seattle, Dioceses of Spokane, Yakima): 

The Archdiocese of Seattle has canceled all public Masses and closed Catholic schools. 

Bishop Thomas Daly of Spokane announced May 27 that public Masses could resume in some counties May 30. He added that "the dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass remains in place until further notice."

In the Diocese of Yakima, public Masses have been suspended.

Province of Washington (Archdiocese of Washington, Diocese of St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands): 

Wilton Cardinal Gregory, Archbishop of Washington, announced June 2 that the obligation to assist at Mass on Sundays and Holy Days will be reinstated June 27, and that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus, another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Bishop Jerome Feudjio of Saint Thomas wrote June 4 that "in concert with a number of Dioceses and Archdioceses in the United States mainland, we have also lifted the dispensation of the Sunday and Holy Days Mass obligation in our Territory." He added that "the obligation to attend Mass does not apply to those who are sick, those in hospitals or nursing homes, those who have reason to believed that they have recently been exposed to the coronavirus or another serious contagious disease, and those with underlying health conditions."

Immediately Subject to the Holy See:

The Personal Ordinariate of St. Peter has suspended public Masses.

Bishop Yousif Habash of the Syriac Eparchy of Our Lady of Deliverance of Newark wrote May 20 that the dispensation of the Sunday and Holy Days Mass obligation will be lifted beginning June 6. He added that "this obligation does not apply to those who are ill; those who have reason to believe that they were recently exposed to the coronavirus or another serious or contagious illness; those who are confined to their home, a hospital, or nursing facility; or those with serious underlying health conditions."

Our mission is the truth. Join us!

Your monthly donation will help our team continue reporting the truth, with fairness, integrity, and fidelity to Jesus Christ and his Church.