Archdiocese announces expanded restrictions
Edmonton, May 6, 2021 – Albertans are dealing with expanded restrictions that affect all faith communities in our province, for at least the next three weeks. The Catholic Archdiocese of Edmonton will continue to respect and implement any restrictions set by the provincial government in its ongoing efforts to protect public health against the COVID-19 corona virus.
Protecting the health and safety of our community and anyone in our churches and buildings is a serious responsibility we must all embrace.
We look forward to the time when we can all worship together, in person. Respecting these restrictions will get our community to that point sooner rather than later. To promote consistency and hopefully avoid as much confusion as possible, the following restrictions will be in effect in all parishes of the Catholic Archdiocese of Edmonton regardless of regions and number of cases in regions:
Archdiocese-wide Guidelines – Effective May 5, 2021
Weekday and Sunday Mass
- In-person attendees limited to 15 people
- At this time, the interpretation is that the priest in not to be counted as one of the 15. All additional individuals in the parish are included in the 15. (We are seeking clarification if the 15 (or 10) includes priest/proclaimer safety).
- It is recommended that no music and/or cantoring at any of the masses take place in order to allow for more parishioners to be able to attend.
- Parishes are in the best position to determine how the 15 will be determined. We are suggesting that the most fair method may be the ‘first come, first in” method
- Parishes are strongly encouraged to continue to livestream masses
- 10- people maximum for funerals, including participants and guests
- We are not considering the priest and funeral directors in the number of 10 participants and guests
- Limit to 1 musician and 1 cantor
- Parishes are advised to contact the funeral home for assistance in sharing information with the family about these changes and to assist with managing attendance
- It is also recommended that the funeral director serve as the Point of Entry person/screener to manage guest and contact tracing
- Livestreaming is encouraged those relatives and friends unable to attend in person.
Weddings and Baptisms
- Weddings: 10 people maximum with existing AHS parameters
Baptisms: may continue provided they adhere to existing AHS guidelines
Confirmation, First Communion
Parishes with scheduled Confirmation Masses or First Communion masses this week (and at least the next two weeks) are encouraged to postpone should it be logistically impossible to accommodate the changes
For any other scheduled parish activity (Confessions, Adoration etc.), the maximum of 15 people in the parish applies. During this three-week period, the provincial Liturgical Task Force will convene to determine additional possibilities should these stricter regulations remain in place beyond the three weeks, with those possibilities communicated in due course as needed.
We thank our clergy for their continued leadership through this very long year. The new restrictions, while unexpected, are required, given the rapid spike in the COVID numbers in the province. As Catholics, we are each called by Christ to be responsible for our neighbour, and to sacrifice our own comfort to protect the most vulnerable, young and old. Please be patient with the situation, one another, and keep each other safe.
For more information contact the Communications Office:
Andrew Ehrkamp, Communications Lead
firstname.lastname@example.org | Ph: 780-469-1010 ext. 2441 | Cell: 780-399-6523