Attending Christmas mass during a pandemic

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Dick and Sandy Gallagher have been going to the Holy Spirit Catholic Church for more than 37 years.

But never before have they attended a Christmas mass with lawn chairs and face masks.

"It's so unreal... Hope we never have to do it again," says Dick.

Under the Governor's stay-at-home order, religious services must be conducted outside and Christmas is no exception.

So worshipers were told to mask up, bring their own chairs, and dress warmly.

The church has been streaming masses online, but many still choose to attend in-person.

For Dick and Sandy, it's something they can't do without.

"It's because the liturgy is so much a part of that. And it is because of the Eucharist, the Holy Communion. And we have to receive it here," says Sandy.

Though the format is different, the significance is the same.

So today, Dick and Sandy will celebrate as best they can while hoping for a return to normalcy next Christmas.
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