As the situation of the Coronavirus outbreak in Hong Kong is getting more and more critical, Cardinal John Tong, taking into account the emergency measures enforced by the Government and after due consultation with medical professionals , has approved the following new pastoral measures:
1. In order that gatherings involving a large number of people may be minimized, the faithful may adopt either of the following alternatives to attending Sunday Mass: a. Watching the Sunday Mass Webcast (in Chinese or English: https://www.catholic.org.hk/) and receive Holy Communion spiritually; OR b. Meditating on the Sunday liturgical text, reading the Bible or saying the Rosary.
2. Those members of the faithful who have visited a region affected by the Coronavirus within 14 days, or have travelled abroad, or have contacted people suspected to be infected by the Coronavirus, should not attend Mass, but they are obliged to follow the provision in Item 1 above.
3. Those members of the faithful who are unwell, or are chronically ill, or are worried that they might be infected by the Coronavirus while staying outdoor, are also advised not to attend Mass, but they are obliged to follow the provision in Item 1 above.
4. The arrangements for Sunday and weekday Masses in churches and chapels remain unchanged. However, members of the faithful who continue to attend Sunday or weekday Masses should put on face masks, pay attention to public hygiene and keep some distance between themselves and others. Singing is suspended (except for the “Alleluia” and “the Mystery of Faith”).
5. Parishes should maintain public hygiene in compliance with the Pastoral Guidelines announced on 27 January 2020.
The arrangements for the Season of Lent and Holy Week will be announced in due course. The faithful should continue to pray that the Lord will protect the regions affected by the Coronavirus, so that they may have a speedy deliverance from the viral epidemic.