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Diocese of Venice to resume in-person Catholic Masses on May 18
May 15, 2020

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The Most Rev. Frank J. Dewane, Bishop of the Diocese of Venice in Florida, has announced that the public celebration of the Eucharist and other Sacraments may resume in parishes across the diocese beginning Monday, May 18, with certain considerations.

All other non-liturgical activities at parishes remain suspended until it is determined that these activities can safely resume.

After much prayer and discernment and having consulted with the priests on the Presbyteral Council, it has been determined that public celebration of the mass in the Diocese of Venice can resume with a congregation present beginning on May 18 and moving forward. All other non-liturgical activities, such as the Knights of Columbus and Men's and Women's Groups at parishes remain suspended until it is determined that these activities can safely resume.

Out of concern for the safety of all involved, diocesan pastors have been asked to follow established directives and guidelines. These limit the size of the congregation to 25% of occupancy, maintain social distancing guidance and ask the faithful's cooperation to wear facemasks and bring with them hand sanitizer for their use. The faithful are also asked to receive communion in the hand.

Further, schedules may need to be adjusted and some priests or liturgical ministers may not be able to participate publicly because of age or health conditions.

For those who have underlying health conditions or might not be comfortable attending public masses just yet, daily live streaming from parishes will continue, and the obligation to attend Sunday Mass is dispensed through Sunday, June 28.

"The faithful of the diocese have been very patient and understanding during this pandemic," said Bishop Dewane. "There is great anticipation for a return to normalcy, however we must take measured steps with resuming masses with a congregation and additional kindness is encouraged for parish priests, staff and volunteers."

Parishioners are encouraged to visit parish websites for the latest updates and guidelines.

The website for the Diocese of Venice, located at 1000 Pinebrook Road, Venice, is dioceseofvenice.org. For additional information, call 941-484-9543.

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