Makers of sacramental wine, altar bread suffer economic hit due to pandemic

With the global pandemic practically shutting everything down for months, the sacramental wine and altar bread business has suffered like other businesses in the country, with COVID-19 preventing most indoor public celebrations of the Mass.

Catholics are for the most part unable to attend Mass in person and receive the Communion host and consecrated wine. And in cases where Mass can be attended by a small congregation that must adhere to health and safety protocols, like social distancing, mask wearing and hand sanitizing, Catholics still might not want to receive Communion.

“Nothing has kept this winery from fulfilling its mission the last century and a half, until now,” said Will Ouweleen, who is the vintner at the O-Neh-Da and Eagle Crest vineyards in Conesus, New York, in the state’s Finger Lakes region. Hemlock Lake is home to the vineyards, which also produce table wines. Read more

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