People of faith in Minnesota are waiting to see whether there’s agreement between Governor Tim Walz and the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, after Catholic leaders announced Thursday that public Masses will resume May 26th despite the governor’s order — and some Lutheran churches announced similar plans. Walz and church leaders have been in discussions. Archbishop Bernard Hebda said Thursday that many people tell him how much they miss public celebration of Mass because they depend on Holy Communion to get through challenges in life. Hebda said, “There was one gentleman… who talked about the fact he’s been in recovery for many years, and he said what makes that possible is that he goes to Mass every morning and receives Communion. And he says this has really been a difficult time for him without that.”
State Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said Thursday that religious gatherings can pose special risks of COVID-19. “There have been some very well-documented experiences around the country and here in Minnesota in a number of communities, where there’s been spread that wouldn’t have been predicted,” Malcolm said.
It’s expected the Trump administration will issue new guidance soon on re-opening places of worship, after the president said Thursday, “The churches are not being treated with respect by a lot of the Democrat governors.”