Archdiocese of Milwaukee says Catholics obligated to return to Sunday Mass Sept. 20

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Updated: 3:19 p.m. on Sept. 11, 2020

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- The Archdiocese of Milwaukee is lifting its Sunday dispensation, which means parishioners are once again obligated to attend Mass. 

This comes after they stopped holding in-person Mass when COVID-19 cases began growing back in March. 

Catholic churches are finally welcoming their followers back.

The father we spoke with Friday says even though it technically is an obligation, they’re excited to once again be able to celebrate Sunday Mass, which is so central to the Catholic faith. 

“For us Catholics to celebrate the Eucharist is essential,” said Father Javier Bustos. “It’s something that we need.” 

The Very Reverend Javier Bustos is the Vicar General for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. 

The archdiocese is lifting its Sunday dispensation as of the 14th of this month -- which means Catholics are expected to come back to Sunday Mass on Sept. 20.

“I could tell you how joyful it is to come back to Mass and how important that is,” said Bustos. 

Due to COVID-19, masses were first confined to online worshiping and are still operating on a limited attendance. 

However if you are sick or have a condition you are still dispensed. 

“You are not committing a sin; you basically are using your prudence to say I’m going to dispense myself from going to Mass because of my condition.”  

But Father Bustos says it’s time for Catholics to return to church because of the need to worship together.  

“We are morally obligated to celebrate the Sunday Mass. But for us Catholics, that obligation, that commandment if you want to say it, is a joy, it’s our food,” said Bustos. “It’s having the nurture we need to keep going.” 

Father Bustos says all the churches want to make sure they’re providing a safe space for everyone by providing masks for those who forget one, providing hand sanitizing stations, cordoning off pews, and even using taped crosses on the floor to remind those coming up to receive the host to social distance. 

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Posted: 3:45 p.m. on Sept. 10, 2020

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A video message for Milwaukee-area Catholics Thursday -- it's from the Milwaukee archdiocese and it's a reminder that practicing Catholics are obliged to attend Sunday Mass again as of this coming Sunday, Sept. 20.

They have been free from that obligation for months because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The archdiocese says a dispensation remains for grave reasons, such as illness or the care of those who are sick.

The video messages features people talking about the joys of attending Mass.

You can view it below:


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