DC Archdiocese shuts down schools, cancels Mass due to coronavirus

The Archdiocese of D.C. announced on Thursday that it will close all schools, and cancel Mass starting this weekend as the region grapples with the advance of the coronavirus.

Schools will be closed from March 16 through March 27, while Mass will be canceled at all parishes, missions, and campus ministries beginning March 14.

Weddings and funeral will proceed, but archdiocesan officials say that attendance should be limited to immediate family.

The order comes on the heels of a mandate from the state of Maryland that shuts down all schools and forbids gatherings of more than 250 people.

“We are aware of the rapidly developing district and state guidelines regarding the coronavirus. My number one priority as your Archbishop is to ensure the safety and health of all who attend our Masses, the children in our schools, and those we welcome through our outreach and services. Please know that this decision does not come lightly to close our schools or cancel Masses,” Archbishop Gregory said.