Bishop Christopher J. Coyne is working with pastors, the Vermont Health Department and the CDC to ensure the safety of the Catholic Community during these challenging times. Through prayer, the practice of recommended preventative measures (such as staying home when sick or in contact with someone that has COVID-19), good hygiene and common sense, we will get through this together.
Bishop Christopher J. Coyne Notices to parishes regarding the following precautionary measures (click dates to read full notice):
Update March 27: Impact of closure of churches on Holy Week and other ministries of the Catholic Church. Holy Week and Easter will be live-streamed on vermontcatholic.org/tvmass
Effective March 25: Diocese of Burlington to close all churches, chapels and indoor shrines as of 5:00 p.m. today follow Governor Scott’s “Stay at Home” order.
Effective March 20: All regularly scheduled public celebrations of the Catholic Mass, sacraments and devotions are suspended until further notice.
Letter March 19: Letter from Bishop Coyne to parishioners regarding the pandemic update and resources.
Notice March 18: Bishop Coyne has asked each parish and chapel to erect a shrine either inside or outside of the church to pray for deliverance from the COVID-19 outbreak. A candle will be kept burning in front of the Blessed Mother for those who have died, for those who are ill, for the doctors, nurses, and caretakers who are treating the sick, for those with suffering family members, for those who are in mourning, for those who are vulnerable, for those who are afraid, and for those leaders whose decisions impact the pandemic.
Effective March 15: All Catholic schools will be closed March 17-April 15. The situation will be monitored and adjusted as warranted.
Effective March 14: The obligation to attend Sunday Mass has been suspended for all Catholics. Mass will still be offered.
Statement March 13: Our response to the challenges of the COVID-19 virus will be guided by local, state and public health experts. So, for example, if a local school system is shut down because of the virus, any Catholic school in that district would close as well. If the state directs that no public gatherings of people should take place for the foreseeable future, then the public celebrations of the Church’s liturgy, including Mass, would be suspended. Older and elderly adults as well as Catholics from vulnerable populations are dispensed from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass.
Effective March 11: Recommended and encouraged that the reception of Holy Communion be in the hand only. If receiving on the tongue, come to receive Holy Communion towards the end of the communion line and receive from the priest. All Holy Water removed from all fonts and fonts removed if possible.
Effective March 4: Suspension of communion from the cup, Sign of Peace and holding hands during the Our Father.