Singing in a pandemic
There is legitimate concern on the part of many of the faithful throughout the diocese regarding singing in church during Mass, especially given the recent rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in several counties.
Understanding that there are differences from county to county in terms of health needs, and differences in resources and church building structures from parish to parish, the decision regarding singing at Mass is at the discretion of the pastor and his council, however, the following are some suggestions of possible best practices for pastors and their council to consider:
- No singing at all, and having only instrumentals
- Singing by cantor only (not completely enforceable, but with the encouragement of the assembly to sing in their hearts)
- Singing by choir with social distancing among themselves and sufficient distance from the choir to the congregation
- Barriers between the cantor/choir and the assembly
- Allowing assembly singing, but requiring all to wear masks throughout the entire service
- Continuing current practices and safeguards
If there are questions or concerns regarding these suggestions, please contact Father Dan Merz, chair of the Diocesan Liturgical Commission.