ASIA/MALAYSIA – The Church resumes the celebration of masses “cum populo”

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Kuala Lumpur – After months of suspension of Masses in the presence of the faithful, due to the pandemic, the Archdiocese of Kuala Lumpur has announced that from October 9, in the diocesan territory “cum populo” Masses will resume. Archbishop Julian Leow, at the head of the local community of Kuala Lumpur, after consulting the “Crisis Task Force Management Team”, a group created by the Church to address the pandemic emergency and take appropriate measures, announced today, September 28, the resumption of the public celebration of the sacraments, starting with daily masses from Saturday, October 9.
As the pandemic situation improves in various parts of the country and within the Archdiocese of Kuala Lumpur, parishes will gradually be allowed to hold public masses, always in accordance with measures and protocols. “The total number of people allowed for each public mass should not exceed one-third of the total capacity of the church, in order to allow adequate distance between participants. This will also apply to weddings and funerals”, said Fr. Michael Chua, Chancellor of the Archdiocese of Kuala Lumpur.
However, according to Fr. Chua, reservations must be made and seats must be numbered in order to allow to trace contacts in case of positivity. Parish priests must ensure that the number of scheduled Masses increases gradually to allow the participation of all the faithful, while respecting the protocols. The Sacrament of Confession can also be resumed at the discretion of the parish priest. The Sacrament of Confirmation can be conferred in parishes in compliance with health measures. For the time being, Baptisms and First Communions remain suspended until further notice due to the greater risks identified. The Crisis Task Force of the Archdiocese will carry out a weekly assessment of the situation based on the following indicators: state vaccination rate; percentage of occupancy of hospital beds and in intensive care wards; average trends of 7 days, before proposing recommendations to the Archbishop who will then give the parish priests and the faithful the guidelines for the celebration of the Sacraments.
Before public Masses resume, a special team in each parish must ensure that the place of celebration has adequate ventilation, in accordance with the Guidelines issued by the Department of Public Safety and Occupational Health. No public mass should resume until such measures have been taken in the buildings, in accordance with state directions.
The Archdiocese of Kuala Lumpur continues to do everything possible, it is noted, “to protect the physical and spiritual needs of its faithful”, respecting the health guidelines and understanding the need to make sacrifices to protect the common good.
“As our parishes prepare to resume the celebration of public masses, we continue to remain vigilant, giving thanks to God for his fidelity and love”, concluded Father Chua.