CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- Catholic Cemeteries of the Archdiocese of Chicago will broadcast Memorial Day Masses online on Monday.
All in-person field Masses at nearly 40 Catholic cemeteries have been cancelled because of COVID-19. The Masses, which will be broadcasted online on Monday, May 25 at 8:30 a.m., will be recorded in three languages, English, Spanish and Polish by Bishop-elect Michael McGovern, Bishop Robert Casey and Bishop Andrew Wypych, respectively and will be available for viewing on the Catholic Cemeteries website.
“Traditionally, our Memorial Day Masses draw thousands to honor our veterans, but because of safety precautions for our veterans and community, we will observe the Masses online this year,” said Ted Ratajczyk, executive director of the Catholic Cemeteries of the Archdiocese of Chicago, in a statement. “Our online Masses will pay tribute to those who have served our great country and our loved ones who have gone before us.”
Cemetery grounds will be open on Memorial Day with visiting hours from 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. Staff members will be onsite and available to assist families. Visitors must abide by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, wear protective facial coverings, and respect social distancing directives. Only gatherings of 10 or less are permitted.
According to Catholic Cemeteries, throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, staff has faithfully assisted all families with the same level of dignity and respect and has maintained the safety of those they serve and the staff members who serve them. They have continued to do the corporal work of mercy in burying the dead and have implemented procedures to assist families with planning arrangements and cemetery selections.
“Our staff members often serve families coming from the bedside of their critically ill loved ones,” said Rev. Larry Sullivan, archdiocesan priest director of Catholic Cemeteries. “They, too are responders, meeting the complex needs of the grieving during these unprecedented times.”