Local churches open doors to 100% capacity

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- At St. John's Cathedral in downtown Fresno, parishioners like Alex Oaxaca have a lot to be thankful for.

"It was a good relief, it's nice coming back to church after all this pandemic stuff," he says.

This weekend marked the first time churches could open their doors for indoor service at 100% capacity since the pandemic began. Because of the large space, the cathedral accommodated social distancing, though not required by the Diocese.

"Now at least we can go to church, see our friends and have a good time," Oaxaca says.

Bishop Joseph Brennan of the Fresno Diocese made the announcement earlier this week, outlining the changes parishioners should adhere to, including offering the sign of peace.

"We ask that physical touching be limited to one's household. You're asked to sign the peace to others by way of a simple bow or wave of the hand," he said.

Pews will be sanitized at least twice Sundays.

Singing and processions can resume if using sensible health precautions as well as collections. However, baskets shouldn't change hands.

Apart from Mass and other Sacramental moments, social gatherings through the church can also start again but only if health and safety guidelines are followed.

For those who couldn't attend mass or for those who aren't ready, Mass is available online.

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