SCRANTON – The Most Rev. Joseph C. Bambera, Bishop of Scranton, has announced that parishes may once again resume the practice of distributing the Precious Blood to the faithful at Masses beginning with the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday, April 6, 2023.

For the last three years during the COVID-19 pandemic, the distribution of the Precious Blood at Mass had been suspended out of an abundance of caution to protect the health and safety of the faithful.

In making his announcement, Bishop Bambera stressed that resuming the practice of distributing the Precious Blood to the faithful is at the discretion of the pastor, administrator or parish life coordinator.

Altar wine is is seen in this 2019 file photo. (CNS photo/Philippe Vaillancourt, Presence)

Not every parish may be ready to immediately resume this practice and Communion from the chalice was optional even before the pandemic. Some parishes may feel it is better to reintroduce the Precious Blood from the chalice gradually or even wait until after flu season is completely over.

As always, it is the choice of each individual whether to receive under both forms or under one form only. Those who receive under only one species are not deprived in any way of the fullness of the Lord’s Presence.

The Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown has also announced that its parishes may begin offering the Precious Blood at Masses beginning Holy Thursday as well.

Many other dioceses – including Pittsburgh, New Orleans, Baton Rouge, and Youngstown, Ohio – have already lifted this restriction and have not seen any significant increases in viral transmission.