March 24, 2020

Statement of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis Regarding Holy Week

Out of great concern for the health of our people and as it is a celebration of the entire archdiocese and the opportunity for the priests to renew the promises of their ordination in the presence of the archbishop and the faithful, the Chrism Mass will be postponed until the current health crisis subsides. Newly blessed Holy oils will be distributed at that time.  Until then, the Holy oils blessed at the 2019 Chrism Mass may continue to be used.

Palm Sunday and Holy Week Liturgies will not be celebrated publicly in our parishes.

  • There are to be no public celebrations, even outside – including live Stations of the Cross on Good Friday.
  • There is to be no distribution of blessed palms; however, if a priest blesses palms privately, those palms may be reserved for distribution at a later date to be determined.
  • Easter sacraments for RCIA candidates and catechumens and for Catholics who are to be confirmed at the Easter Vigil are to be postponed – guidance will be provided later on when they might be celebrated after this crisis subsides. (Please note: If a member of the elect is in danger of death, please follow RCIA Part II, no.3, “Christian Initiation of a person in danger of death.” The ritual book The Pastoral Care of the Sick also contains the rite for Christian Initiation of the Dying. Also, Canon 1183 §1 states, “when it concerns funerals, catechumens must be counted among the Christian faithful.”)
  • The Mass of the Lord’s Supper (without washing of the feet), the Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion, and the Easter Vigil will be celebrated by Archbishop Thompson and 2 or 3 concelebrants in Saints Peter and Paul Cathedral without a congregation and will be livestreamed on
  • Directions for priests celebrating the liturgies of Holy Week have been provided.
  • There should be no distribution of Holy Communion in any way outside of Last Rites currently or during Holy Week until we are cleared to return for public liturgies.
  • Please continue to follow the stay at home order of Governor Holcomb.

The guidelines of the statement from March 17 regarding funerals remain in force. Please adhere to these, as well as the ongoing suspension of ALL public liturgies, which includes all Masses AND Communion services.

Again, these guidelines and all current liturgical guidance, developed in line with that of the CDC and competent authorities can be found at Please reference this page often to remain familiar with how best to serve the people of God during this pandemic.

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