Brothers and Sisters,
It seems like I am the holdout in my decision to cancel
all public Masses as the other dioceses or the Province
have announced in the last days. But given the
announcement of the President today, as well as the
logic of doing what we can to limit the spread of this
virus, I have decided to mandate the cessation of all
public Masses to be celebrated in the Diocese of
Knoxville, effective March 20, 2020.
Thus, the last public Masses for a bit will be celebrated on March 19, 2020, the Solemnity of St. Joseph. I will revisit this on April 1, 2020. Tomorrow I will share more details but please know that I am trying to be a good shepherd and know that I can count on you.
Reminder also, all parish meetings as well as diocesan events are canceled until further notice. The same is true for penance services. All Confirmations scheduled in the next weeks will be rescheduled. Given as I am the lone celebrant this year, I may ask the smaller groups to bridge together.
More to come tomorrow. Remember that which guides us is faith and common sense.
Knox County has implemented a Safer at Home declaration to help stop the spread of coronavirus.
Everyone in Knox County is urged to shelter in place. The order was issued by the Knox County Health Department and starts at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday. The order lasts for 14 days.
Gatherings of 10 or more people are prohibited.
The following are the business, institutions and services that Knox County considers essential in the Safer at Home declaration, which means people who work in these fields may leave their homes to do so. Businesses with questions can call 311.
Hardware and appliance stores
Laundromats and cleaning services
Vehicle service stations
Veterinary and pet supply services