Valley churches taking steps to prevent Flu

FRESNO, Calif.

From the outside looking in Sunday morning mass at Saint John's Cathedral seemed no different. Were it not for recent directives from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Fresno, you might not notice anything until you take communion.

Eucharistic Minister Lorenzo Santos Vega said, "They highly recommend not giving it in the mouth because of the Flu season."

Lorenzo Santos Vega has given communion here at St. John's for more than 25 years.

He's had to modify his methods before; usually during Flu season for a few months, or at least until the threat passes.

"It's kind of sad when you come to mass you look forward to the Holy Eucharist and it's sad to see they're not receiving the blood of wine of our lord Jesus Christ, but at this time, it's for the best for the people," Lorenzo said.

For Audrey Lara it was a noticeable difference. The chalice also known as the "precious blood" is not distributed and the host is handed out rather than placed on the tongue.

Parishioner Audrey Lara said, "it's not the same, but you have the same feeling, you know why you're not doing, it's not taking a whole lot away."

The Diocese also reminds people not to come to mass if they feel sick.. Wash your hands and use sanitizer and if possible get a Flu shot.

While the methods may have changed the message is still the same.

"Mass is the most important thing we have in mass, to receive the blood and body of Jesus Christ," Lara said.

Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.