Canadian archdiocese reverses vaccination proof for Mass

Vaccination proof requirement reversed

An archdiocese in the Canadian province of New Brunswick has reversed its recent decision requiring proof of double vaccination for parishioners to attend masses, baptisms and prayer groups.

Archbishop Valery Vienneau said the decision to change the policy followed a conversation between the four bishops of the Archdiocese of Moncton and the New Brunswick provincial health authorities on Thursday night.

The updated policy comes after the archdiocese had previously announced and confirmed policies beyond government requirements mandatory proof of vaccination for many public buildings and events, but not houses of worship.

However, proof of vaccination status is required for weddings and funerals in all venues which are not private residences. Still, there is no maximum capacity cap or requirement for social distancing.

Instead, the local Catholic dioceses have agreed to a common set of policies to combat the spread of the virus, including mandatory masks for indoor liturgies and attendance at 50% to allow for social distancing.

Other dioceses in the province announced their own policies of mandatory indoor masking. Still, none had announced a requirement for proof of vaccination.

Earlier in the week, New Brunswick premier Blaine Higgs had warned that restrictions on maximum capacity and a return to social distancing may be necessary for churches. But he stopped short of suggesting proof of vaccination status for houses of worship.

The archdiocese new policies align with the Church’s own internal assessment of vaccines and public health protections during the pandemic.

Pope Francis and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith have made clear that it is morally acceptable for Catholics to receive all of the widely available vaccines against coronavirus. They repeatedly stated that doing so is a service to the common good. The CDF has also insisted that vaccination is a matter of prudential moral freedom for the individual.


The Pillar

Diocese of Moncton

The B.C. Catholic

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News category: World.

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