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Reopening: Redwood City Church Holds 1st Public Mass Since Shelter-In-Place With Archbishop

REDWOOD CITY (CBS SF) – Catholic Archbishop of San Francisco Salvatore Cordileone presided over Mass at a church in Redwood City Monday morning, as public religious services were allowed to resume under a revised health order in San Mateo County.

Several dozen people appeared to be in attendance, wearing masks and social distancing in the pews for the service at Saint Pius Catholic Church, according to a livestream of the service posted on the church's website.

"It's interesting that the ending of our shelter-in-place coincides with Pentecost, which is the ending of those first Disciples ending their shelter-in-place," Cordileone said in a brief homily. One of the most important dates on the calendar for Christians, Pentecost was on Sunday.

Along with masks and social distancing, among the other adjustments at Monday's service was distribution of Communion not taking place until the end of Mass. Cordileone and other priests were seen wearing masks as they distributed Communion to the faithful in attendance.

For weeks, churches and other houses of worship have not held public services due to the ban on gatherings to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Many congregations have brought their services online.

Under guidelines from the state (.pdf), capacity at houses of worship will be limited to a maximum of 25 percent of a building's capacity or 100 people, whichever is lower. People attending religious services are also asked not to engage in handshakes or hugs, and events such as potlucks should not be held.

While religious services are allowed in San Mateo County with restrictions, services in San Francisco won't be allowed until June 15th.

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