The new ‘traffic light’ system will allow people to gather in churches under certain conditions from early December;
Parishes will provide Masses for vaccinated people with a My Vaccine Pass.
A separate numbers-restricted Mass will be open to vaccinated and unvaccinated alike (no proof of vaccine required).
All those who are ushers, readers, ministers of the Eucharist, collectors, those leading liturgies of the Word, Communion to the sick, etc will need to be fully vaccinated at vaccination-only Masses.
Priests who are not fully vaccinated will be unable to exercise pastoral care in aged-care residential settings or hospitals as well as schools.
Fully vaccinated priests presiding at a service open to both the vaccinated and unvaccinated, need to give due consideration to any health conditions that make them more susceptible to being infected by Covid-19.
Pending any changes accompanying the ‘traffic light’ system, Parishes should continue with measures designed to minimise the risk of transmitting Covid-19, such as encouraging the use of masks, social distancing, communion only in the hand, no holy water for blessing, and no shared hymn or other books.
The New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference have commentary on their website:
The full Bishops letter is available from: