San Antonio churches ease COVID-19 restrictions ahead of Easter weekend

SAN ANTONIO – Excitement is filling parishes around San Antonio as Easter masses and celebrations are underway.

“It’s a great blessing to be back here for Easter,” said Anthony Selvanathan, parishioner.

Selvanathan is looking forward to attending mass this Easter weekend at St. Michael Catholic Church on the East Side. He said growing up, he went to mass every Sunday.

“Just being able to come to church really is one of those normal ritualistic things that we do every week,” Selvanathan said.

Many parishioners had to adjust amid the pandemic and churches like this one had to be creative.

“When the pandemic first hit last year, we were not able to have anyone in church. And so, that’s when we started doing livestreams,” said Kevin Fausz, pastor at St. Michael Catholic Church.

Pastor Kevin Fausz said last year, they had no one in church for Easter services, but this year that’s changed.

“I’m excited and I know other priests within the archdiocese are really excited about being able to celebrate with large congregations and to see the people that we’ve missed,” Fausz said.

The Archdiocese of San Antonio said churches can now open all pews and reduce social distancing requirements from six feet to three feet.

Fausz said people must still wear a mask and have their temperatures checked.

“The priest will still wear the mask when he gives communion, sanitize his hands before, sanitize his hands after,” Fausz said.

Fausz expects a big turnout this weekend.

“I have noticed in the last several weeks, we really have gone up in our numbers. And I think that, again, is because of the vaccinations,” Fausz said.

This year, San Antonio’s Passion of the Christ procession is available to view online. The event draws thousands of people to downtown, but was prerecorded this year.

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