The Office of Worship for the Catholic Diocese of Dallas has released a statement regarding influenza activity and guidance on the use of the cup in serving the Precious Blood at Mass.
Influenza activity continues to increase in the U.S., according to information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The state of Texas reports and the CDC has verified widespread cases of various types of influenza (H1N1 has returned this season).
According to the CDC, people with flu can spread it to others up to about 6 feet away, and experts think that flu viruses are spread mainly by droplets made “when people with flu cough, sneeze or talk…less often, a person might also get flu by touching a surface or object that has a flu virus on it and then touching their mouth or nose.” (Source: CDC website, www.cdc.gov/glu/about/disease/)
The USCCB Committee on Divine Worship has in the past provided guidance in response to pastors and persons who question the use of the cup in serving the Precious Blood at Mass. Based on such guidance, the Office of Worship therefore offers the following measures, and asks that the priests, deacons, and especially Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion be clearly advised and instructed.
The faithful should also be advised of their individual responsibility in taking the Precious Blood, depending on their own personal health situation.
Please see the attached statement in PDF form for full advisory from Dr. Patricia Hughes, Director of the Office of Worship.