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Ind. Catholic Dioceses lifting dispensation from the obligation of Mass

Updated: May. 21, 2021 at 10:20 AM CDT
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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - Parishioners have been wearing masks for months, sitting rows apart or not attending Mass at all.

Church officials say that’s going to change.

“I think it’s been a little bit of a long time coming, I think people have been having a hard time with the online masses and services,” Heather Gogel, who attends St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Evansville said.

Starting June 11, officials say social distancing in churches is no longer required across Indiana.

People are encouraged to come unless they are seriously ill, diagnosed with compromised health conditions, or take care of someone who’s sick.

“It’s profound, thanks to God, that certainly we have come through this year,” Bishop Joseph Siegel of the Catholic Diocese of Evansville said. “It’s been terrible for so many people. It’s had so many effects on so many people that this is a light of hope that we can come through this with decrease of cases and the vaccines, we’ll certainly be able to safely welcome people back.”

Churchgoers say what they’re most excited about is to be able to actually participate in Mass.

“That is the center of Catholicism is the Eucharist, and if you can’t receive it and fell hindered from coming, I think a lot of people felt like it was hindering their faith,” Gogel said.

Bishop Siegel says to consult your pastor if you have any questions or concerns about returning to Mass.

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