JOINT STATEMENT: THE SPIRITUAL LEADERS OF THE ROMAN CATHOLIC DIOCESES OF SIOUX FALLS AND RAPID CITY
Plan for resuming public Mass once social distancing and hygiene practices are in place
May 1, 2020
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Our decision on March 17, 2020 to suspend public Masses was made after much prayer, consultation, and after having reviewed the recommendations of public health authorities. This decision was focused on preventing the spread of the COVID-19 virus especially for the most vulnerable. We know this extraordinary measure has been difficult for all the faithful. We are grateful for the acts of charity and expressed understanding that we have witnessed in our midst during this time.
This makes us all the more pleased to bring you good spiritual news in this Easter season.
Today, we write to share that we have initiated a process that will lead to Masses being prayed publicly in the Dioceses of Sioux Falls and Rapid City. What is most important for you to know at this time is that the decision on when parishioners may resume their participation in Holy Mass in their parish church and their reception of Holy Communion will be made by your pastor, in consultation with guidelines that we will be providing them at the diocesan level.
Determining the date when public Masses will begin in each parish will include developing a plan for implementation, setting up procedures for maintaining social distancing and proper hygiene and communicating all of this to parishioners. Public Masses will not begin before May 15.
Several important points we ask you to keep in mind