Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Nov 12, 2020 / 15:00 pm
The Diocese of Portland, Maine, has expressed frustration at being excluded from conversations with the state governor over safe reopening practices during the coronavirus pandemic after church capacity was again reduced to 50 people.
"It's really frustrating since all 141 Catholic churches in Maine have followed the protocols set forth by the state and have had zero outbreaks or cases stemming from Masses," Dave Guthro, director of communications for the Diocese of Portland, told CNA on Thursday.
Following months of tight lockdown restrictions, Churches in the state had briefly been allowed to host 50% of building capacity, up 100 people total, for indoor gatherings, including Mass. On Nov. 1, Maine Gov. Janet Mills (D) announced that due to a rising number of cases and hospitalizations, the number of people allowed at indoor gatherings will be lowered again to 50 total.
Outdoor gatherings are limited to 100 people, with a requirement that there be 1,000 square feet for every five people present.