June 18, 2021 COVID-19 Update


Archbishop Vigneron has approved the following revised guidelines for parishes. These new guidelines will take effect on Monday, June 28, 2021.

As Michigan returns to a more normal lifestyle, COVID-19 related liturgical protocols could be retained by local pastors. Pastors should be conscious that any protocols they retain should be seen as extraordinary measures for extraordinary times. Parishes/Families of Parishes should create a timeline as to when any of their parish/family protocols will expire.

  1. The Archdiocesan-wide directive to wear face-coverings and social distance has expired. Each pastor/In Solidum team should establish a protocol for their parish(es)/Family of Parishes based upon local conditions (e.g., a pastor/team may: establish an area where social distancing continues to be observed, direct the return of choirs, institute the resumption of the presentation of gifts, retain sanitization/face covering surrounding the distribution of Holy Communion).
  2. A reminder that clergy may, if they wish, continue to use separate Chalices or to receive the Precious Blood by intinction.
  3. It is recommended, at the present time, that parishes refrain from distributing Holy Communion from the Chalice to the faithful (except for bride and groom on their wedding day). The faithful can be reminded that in receiving the Sacred Host, they are also receiving the Blood of the living Christ.
  4. Parishes should have signage indicating any local parish COVID protocols. This is especially helpful for visitors.
  5. Parishes should look to the Department of Catholic Schools for particular guidance regarding youth athletics and school activities.
  6. Parishes should look to the Department of Human Resources for workplace guidance (requirements for parish offices, etc.).
  7. These liturgical directives replace all previously issued liturgical directives related to COVID-19.

Archbishop Vigneron announced that the general dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days expired on Saturday, March 13, 2021. In its place, he has granted a number of particular dispensations for the faithful who may find themselves in specific circumstances.

Please read below for information about these specific dispensations and visit aod.org/comehometohope to learn more about how our parishes are working to keep everyone safe at Mass as well as tips and advice for inviting friends and family to attend Mass with you.

Considering the grave obligation we have of being physically present with our brothers and sisters at Mass on Sunday and Holy Days of Obligation for the Eucharist, each of us is asked to make a good and sincere judgement as to whether these circumstances apply or not. Where doubt or confusion persists, consult any priest for clarity.

While the general dispensation is removed, there are specific instances where the dispensation will continue, as well as those circumstances where there is no obligation in the first place. One does not have an obligation to attend Mass on Sunday in the following circumstances:

  1. You are ill or your health condition 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). Please use the dispensation and do not attend Mass.
  2. You exhibit flu-like symptoms. Please use the dispensation and do not attend Mass.
  3. 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). Please use the dispensation and do not attend Mass.
  4. You care for the sick, homebound, or infirmed.
  5. You are pregnant.
  6. Those 65 years of age or older (per the CDC’s recommendation of high-risk individuals).
  7. You cannot attend Mass through no fault of your own (e.g., no Mass is offered, you are infirmed, or, while wanting to go, you are prevented for some reason you cannot control (e.g., your ride did not show up, the church was at capacity).
  8. If you have significant fear or anxiety of becoming ill by being at Mass.

For questions about the application of any of these, please contact your pastor.

These categories will be reviewed in due course and revised as needed.

Those within categories #1-8 above must still observe the Lord’s Day and are encouraged to spend time in prayer on Sunday, meditating on the Lord’s passion, death and resurrection; an excellent way to do this is through participating in a broadcast of the Sunday Mass.

COVID-19 Update as of June 18, 2021 Learn More