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Diocese of Grand Rapids suspending wine at Masses due to Coronavirus concerns

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Posted at 9:31 PM, Mar 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-11 21:31:16-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich- — The Diocese of Grand Rapids has announced changes to its Masses in an effort to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus.

As the Diocese continues to monitor the outbreak of COVID-19, Bishop Walkowkiak has issued the following guidelines that will be implemented at all of their Masses, effectively immediately until further notice:

  • The distribution of sacramental wine is being temporarily suspended at all Masses. It will be up to each communicant to determine how they want to receive the Body of Christ
  • Hand sanitizer should be used by all Ordinary and Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion before and after distributing the Eucharist
  • The Sign of Peace should be exchanged without any physical contact and instead said with a greeting or head nod
  • Parishioners shouldn't hold hands during the Our Father, and there should be no physical greetings before Masses
  • Holy Water fonts should be cleaned and emptied
  • During the celebration of confirmation, Bishop Walkowkiak will not shake hands with those newly confirmed

If you are exhibiting any flu or cold systems, the Diocese asks you stay home from Mass and that your Sunday obligation will be waived. Those who have to stay home are encouraged to the 10 a.m. Sunday Mass that's televised from the Cathedral of Saint Andrew.