Some Catholic dioceses have begun updating their COVID protocols for public Masses, as federal public health officials have introduced new guidance.
The new guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), issued on May 13, states that fully vaccinated people “can resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.”
The guidance specifies that a person is considered “fully vaccinated” two weeks after receiving a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, or two weeks after receiving the second dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.
On the same day the CDC published its new guidance, the Catholic Conference of Ohio announced that it would lift its general dispensation from the Sunday obligation on the weekend of June 5.
Catholics are obligated to attend Mass on all Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation, except for grave reasons. Bishops throughout the United States granted general dispensations from the obligation during the pandemic, but some dioceses began lifting the dispensation beginning in August 2020.