Expired Directives and Guidelines
June 15, 2021
Intermin Guidance for Parishes
May 22, 2021
Announcement Regarding Mass Obligation
May 19, 2021
COVID-19 Update: Pentecost Sunday
Additional Expired Guidelines
January 27, 2021
January 21, 2021
November 26, 2020
Supreme Court Ruling
November 19, 2020
Precautions during COVID-19 resurge
October 20, 2020
Christmas during COVID-19
June 6, 2020
Allowance for Parish Reopenings
Diocese of Buffalo welcomes allowance for parish reopenings Parishes that are prepared to welcome up to 33% of capacity, following Diocesan established protocols may do so as soon as possible.
May 21, 2020
Guidelines for Returning to Parish Life
The Diocese of Buffalo has issued guidance for parish pastors and administrators – Forward in Faith – detailing the preparations and precautions they must follow in preparing to resume liturgical services and the celebration of sacraments as the novel coronavirus threat continues.
April 22, 2020
The most recent mandate was for a “stay-at-home” measures to exist until at least 5/15/20 in New York State. This means that we cannot expect any Masses or Liturgical Celebration with a normal congregation before that time. Our Churches are permitted to remain open for private prayer at the discreation of the Pastor. The Pastor retains the right to limit or forbid such private prayer in his church should he deem it to be a safety or security liability. Update on Supplemental Sacramental and Liturgical Directives Post Coronavirus from 6/19/2020: (PDF)
March 31, 2020
No Distribution of Palms
Due to the ongoing and growing threat of the novel coronavirus throughout Western New York, there will be no distribution of palms during Palm Sunday weekend or in the days following. We sincerely regret this development. However, due to the inability to ensure the safe handling of palms, and in order to prevent risk to those most vulnerable to the coronavirus, this additional precaution has been required. We thank you for your understanding and continue to encourage all of the Diocese of Buffalo to stay united in prayer for those who have succumbed or are afflicted due to the virus, as well as their loved ones.
March 20, 2020
There are NOT to be any public celebrations. even outside including live Stations of the Cross. No public celebrations of Mass or Communion Services. The Celebration of Reconciliation (Confession) is allowed ONLY in grave situations as well as Anointing of the Sick. There is no distribution of Palms for Palm Sunday
March 15, 2020
Public Masses Cancelled
Bishop Edward B. Scharfenberger announces that there will be no regularly scheduled public Masses in the Diocese of Buffalo until further notice due to an abundance of caution and growing concerns about the spread of the novel coronavirus. Churches may remain open, as locally feasible, and the faithful are encouraged to continue to visit and pray while maintaining a prudent distance from one another.
All Catholic Schools are Closed
All Catholic elementary schools in Western New York are closed today, Monday, March 16, 2020 due to emergency declarations by the Governor of New York and area county governments. Starting Tuesday, March 17th, all schools will remain closed for various lengths of time. Schools in the City of Buffalo and in Erie County are closed until Monday, April 20th. Niagara, Genesee, Chautauqua and Allegany Counties have closed schools until further notice. Cattaraugus County has closed their schools until Monday, April 13th.