Chicago Roman Catholic Churches Hold Services Since Archdiocese Announces New COVID Mask Rules

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CHICAGO (WLS) – Holy Name Cathedral held its first Sunday service this weekend since the Archdiocese of Chicago relaxed its rules on wearing masks.

“Ultimately it will be great because it will mean that the pandemic is going to end soon and we can hopefully get back to normal,” said parishioner Carol Branka.

At this time, masks are still required for services at Holy Name, but they may not be required in other churches as a result of recent changes.

After more than a year without going to church due to the pandemic, Angela Luby is one of several Chicago-area Roman Catholics returning to worship in person.

“This is the first time I have come back since March 2020,” she said. “I can’t wait to be back. There is excitement about it. I feel more comfortable now.”

The changes are being made in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s new mask guidelines.

The Archdiocese will allow parishes two options for Masses and Liturgies:

  • Fully vaccinated people can attend church without a mask as long as they provide verifiable proof of vaccination.
  • The other option available to churches is to require masks for all worshipers until the state reaches the final stage of reopening.
  • “You’re used to it now, you know, and you have so many rules that you want to try to behave,” said Richard Kijowski, a practitioner.

    As Kijowski continued to follow church rules, the veteran said he had long believed wearing the mask was unnecessary.

    “I don’t think you need it,” he said. “I don’t agree with all the shebang we’ve had here over the past 15 months.”

    The archdiocese expects parishes with fewer resources to check vaccinations to stick to mandatory masks.

    Along with these new mask rules, there will also be an increase in capacity at Holy Name Cathedral. People here said it was an indication that things were finally getting back to normal.

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