SAN JUAN, Texas — After about a month, churchgoers may soon get to attend mass in person.
The Catholic Diocese of Brownsville announced they have set a date for reopening and are taking all measures to ensure the safety of everyone attending.
On Monday, some churches will reopen their doors.
“It is by the grace of God and we thank God we are able to begin the process of opening the churches,” said Daniel E. Flores, Bishop of Catholic Diocese of Brownsville.
However, there are rules churchgoers must follow.
“Persons who come to mass will disinfect their hands before they enter and after the leave, they must stay six feet apart, we are asking that they skip every other pew and everyone will have to use a mask,” said Bishop Flores.
None of the services will be filled to capacity in hopes of staying sanitary.
After service, the entire building will be sanitized.
“We will have a team that is ready right after service finishes to sanitize and that includes the pews, that includes seats, places around the alter and that takes time,” said Bishop Flores.
So he’s asking for everyone to be prepared to wait and be patient.
“I ask people to be very patient, very patient because sometimes church will be full before they get there,” said Bishop Flores.
Eucharist will still be happening, but people must wear their mask and only lower it to take the offering.
Bishop Flores does stress if someone has medical conditions or is over the age of 65 they should stay home.
Mass will still be offered online via live stream services.
“Catholics are not obliged to go to Mass on Sundays, but many have this hunger, I have heard, Many have this great hunger which I understand as a catholic, to draw close to God, especially in times of trial, like these,” said Flores.
All prayer groups and communions will now only be in small groups of ten people or less and strict social distancing will be required.
Mass services will happen during the week, freeing up some seats on Sunday.
Bishop Flores says if needed, more protocols may be put in place.