Honouring Sunday – a statement from the Bishops’ Conference

See the source imageDuring the pandemic, public worship was suspended for a time and there have been restrictions on parish life.  As a result, people have been exploring other ways to practice their faith, including Spiritual Communion via live streaming. As people begin returning to more regular patterns of parish life, and following the plenary meeting of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales this week, the bishops have issued a statement about the importance of honouring Sunday.

Although it was hoped that Catholics would be able to fulfil the Sunday obligation by the First Sunday of Advent, their latest statement says “At this time, we recognise that for some people there may be certain factors which hinder attendance at Sunday Mass. The pandemic is clearly not over. The risk of infection is still present. For some, there is legitimate fear in gathering together. As your bishops, we recognise that these prevailing circumstances suggest that not everyone is yet in the position to fulfil the absolute duty to attend freely Sunday Mass.”

We are all encouraged to “look again at the patterns which (we) have formed in recent months with regard to going to Mass on Sundays. This would include consideration and reflection about what we might do on Sundays”, responding to the gift of the Sunday Eucharist and “motivated by a real love for the Lord whom we encounter in the Mass.”

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