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Catholic Bishops of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Restore Requirement to Attend Mass on Sundays

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) – Some Catholics returned to church for the first time this weekend as the bishops of Pennsylvania reinstated the requirement to attend mass on Sundays and Holy Days.

At the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia, many worshipers say they feel safe attending Mass.

“Well, that’s why I’m coming here,” said Brian Scanlon, who says he’s been to mass throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

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He says he understands people who don’t feel safe.

“When it comes to sickness, you are exempt from Mass. If you are afraid of sickness, it is a legitimate reality,” Scanlon said.

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia grants exceptions to certain persons from the obligation, including those who are ill or present a serious risk to their health.

During Sunday morning services at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, the priest spoke about the importance of presenting oneself.

“It’s the best part, the feeling of community, to be back with everyone. It was nice at home, when we could do it, but it’s nice to be with everyone.” said Annette Santolla of Mechanicsburg.

The archdiocese says it is working with public health officials to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in the church. Despite the recent increase in cases, the Archdiocese believes that in-person services are safe.

Archbishop Nelson Perez said in a statement in part: “Ensuring the health and well-being of those entrusted to the pastoral and temporal care of our church, especially as we navigate a global pandemic, is a top priority. as Archbishop of Philadelphia. “

In addition to returning to church, the Archdiocese is once again calling on anyone in a position to get vaccinated against COVID-19 to do so as an act of charity.

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