Updated: March 12, 2020 07:32 PM
Created: March 12, 2020 07:08 PM
Archbishop Bernard Hebda of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis said in a statement Thursday evening that the obligation for parishioners to celebrate Mass would be suspended amid the novel coronavirus outbreak.
While the bishop said he would not cancel Sunday Mass, he encouraged those who want to stay at home to watch Mass remotely, either online or via radio and TV broadcasts.
Mass will be broadcast on TV at 11 a.m. Sunday on KSTC-TV/45, and on the radio at 9 a.m. on Relevant Radio 1330 AM.
The bishop's statement reads, in part:
"In ordinary circumstances, Catholics are obliged to participate in Mass on Sundays and other holy days of obligation," Hebda states. "This obligation is suspended in cases of moral or physical impossibility, and may also be dispensed for a just cause when it is for the spiritual good of the faithful. In addition, the Church also has the obligation to protect those who are most vulnerable and those who care for the sick.
"Due to the increasing number of confirmed COVID-19/coronavirus cases in the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, I determine it prudent to dispense all Catholics in the territory of this Archdiocese from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass, until further notice. If the faithful decide that congregating for Sunday Mass would constitute a risk to themselves or others, they have the freedom not to attend."
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