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February 26, 2021
I join all Catholics and people of faith in Santa Clara County in expressing our satisfaction in tonight’s U.S. Supreme Court decision rejecting Santa Clara County’s ban on indoor worship services. Santa Clara was the only county in the country to continue such a ban. Banning indoor worship and yet allowing people to gather at airports, personal services establishments, and retail shopping is unconstitutional—and the Supreme Court has said so several times.
In support, the Diocese of San Jose worked with Becket Law to file a friend-of-the-court brief in the matter of Gateway City Church v. Newsom before the Supreme Court on February 24, 2021. We are grateful to San Jose’s Gateway City Church and The Spectrum Church, Campbell’s The Home Church and Orchard Community Church and Morgan Hill’s Trinity Bible Church for their efforts to uphold our right to worship in Santa Clara County, as guaranteed by the US Constitution.
All parishes, missions, and chapels in the Diocese of San Jose may resume indoor worship services up to 20% capacity effective immediately, but only if and when each parish can safely do so following all masking, social distancing, and sanitization protocols. As we continue to protect the most vulnerable among us, the dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass is still in effect. Parishes will continue to offer outdoor and livestream Masses wherever possible for parishioners who are vulnerable to COVID-19 or hesitant about indoor worship.
Let us move forward in hope, continuing all necessary safety precautions and receiving the vaccine when it is our turn as we seek to protect life in our communities. Let us pray for all those suffering from the effects of the pandemic and its aftermath.
Diocese of San Jose Communications