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We pray that you and your loved ones are safe and healthy as we journey towards the birth of Jesus on Christmas Day.
As many Catholics throughout the Archdiocese of Toronto discern their plans over the next several days, we offer the following information to help you make an informed decision regarding Christmas services:
- The Archdiocese of Toronto’s 225 churches remain open for prayer and sacramental celebrations. We continue to operate at significantly reduced capacity (in most parishes approximately 30 per cent) with physical distancing required between non-family members. We recognize this is a fluid situation and continue to monitor conditions and remain in regular contact with government and health officials.
- Please check with your local parish regarding their Christmas schedule. Many have scheduled additional Masses and many will require advance reservations. The Archdiocese of Toronto website provides links to parish websites along with appropriate contact information.
- All churches continue to follow WorshipSafe protocols to ensure a safe environment for those joining us this Christmas season. This includes distanced seating, use of masks inside the church (limited medical exemptions apply) and slightly modified services to make every effort to minimize the risk of transmission of Covid-19. These measures have served us all well over the past two years.
- If you are feeling unwell or experiencing Covid-19 symptoms, please do not come to Mass. As we have seen throughout the country (and globally) in recent days, the Omicron variant is particularly contagious. If you are symptomatic, seek out a rapid-antigen test, a PCR test or consult with your physician – and, most importantly, for the safety of others, please stay home.
- Many parishes continue to offer livestream services, including St. Michael’s Cathedral Basilica. Christmas services are also available online through Salt & Light Catholic Media Foundation and the National Catholic Broadcasting Council.
In these days of uncertainty, we find hope and peace in the birth of Jesus, our Savior. Wherever you may be celebrating Christmas this year, we pray that you and your loved ones will experience good health, the love of family and friends and the comfort of a loving God who has blessed us in abundance now and always.