With Governor Gavin Newsom set to unveil guidelines earlier this week to restart religious services directly, Roman Catholic diocese of San Diego has begun planning to welcome the parishioners warmly.
The diocese has determined that a private daily Mass can begin June 8 and set June 14 as the target date for parishes to celebrate Sunday Mass, with important steps needed to establish social distance.
The plan is still being developed, taking into account guidelines from district and state health officials and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
But that will likely mean major changes, including shorter Masses, protective masks for parishioners, no choirs or singing, attendance with a capacity of 25 percent to 50 percent, among others, said Kevin Eckery, deputy chancellor of the diocese and an interpreter speak for the parish. diocese.
“We don’t want people to come back and think of it as usual,” Eckery said. “No, this will be the new normal. We will not do anything that endangers the people and family, or do anything that spreads the virus.”
San Diego Catholic Bishop Robert W. McElroy has suspended his obligation to attend Mass in person in the future.
“We must all urge our sick and vulnerable members of society not to come to Mass,” he said. The church will continue to offer Mass online even after returning for direct service.
California’s decision to set aside the church while opening other parts of the economy has sparked political and legal fireworks over the past few weeks.
President Donald Trump urged governors across the country last week to reopen synagogues, calling them important.
The US Department of Justice also questions whether California’s decision to wait to relax restrictions on the church – while allowing retailers and restaurants to reopen with restrictions – could violate the religious group’s constitutional rights.
Legal battles continue to flare up between Newsom and a church based in Chula Vista that claims California’s restrictions unfairly elect religious gatherings while allowing restaurants and retailers to reopen.
The South Bay Pentecostal Church said on Sunday that they had petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court. to intervene and issue an emergency order against Newsom regarding restrictions on state churches.
The Supreme Court petition came after the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. the 9th on Friday rejected a request by the church for a temporary detention order against a ban on people in Newsom. The appeals court panel was divided 2-1 for California.
The church wants to hold a private service, fully subject to social distance and other corona virus mitigation measures. He called on the high court to order Newsom “to stop and stop practicing religious bias in California, in blatant violation of the constitutional guarantee of the First Amendment that citizens can freely practice their religious faith.”
At least 1,200 churches and maybe more states plan to hold a personal service on May 31 for Pentecost Sunday – no matter what reopening guidelines were launched by Newsom this week.
Father Fred Zariczny from Oceanside’s Ministry of the Wind Ministry held a personal service on Sunday despite health orders across the state banning the meeting – moving worship services to parking lots to increase social distance for about 100 people in attendance.
“We are not trying to make a statement,” said Zariczny, who is also the founder of Bikers for Christ. “One of our points is that the church is very important. If 7-Elevens is important, if the liquor store is important, how important is the church? “
Rushing Wind Ministry has held a private service for three weeks. The Hilltop Tabernacle in Chula Vista has also held services in place in the past, but it is unclear whether the church did it on Sunday. The church does not respond to calls and emails.
For Muslims in the region, they celebrate Eid al-Fitr on Sunday, which officially marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan, without organizing prayer groups. In exchange, the San Diego Muslim Leadership Council urged worshipers to pray at home and listen to the sermons being played live.
While the Muslim community has held several encouraging activities, they have no plans to reopen the mosque until developing a strategy to protect all people, including age groups and others who are most vulnerable to COVID-19, said Ismahan Abdullahi, a board member of the local Muslim council.
“Unless we can guarantee safety, unless we have a plan that does that, we will not reopen,” Abdullahi said.
Meanwhile, San Diego County on Sunday reported 142 new cases of COVID-19 and no additional deaths.
The new cases pushed the total area to 6,701 and represented 3 percent of the 4,548 tests conducted Saturday, the county said.
The death toll in this region reached 249.
About 18.4 percent of cases have resulted in hospitalization. About 5.5 percent of all cases and 30 percent of hospitalizations have been treated in intensive care.
Staff writer David Hernandez contributed to this report.
to request modification Contact us at Here or c[email protected]