In this Feb. 17, 2021, file photo, the Rev. Frank Murray delivers Ash Wednesday mass at St. John Catholic Church on York Street in Bangor. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik / BDN

In line with Maine’s reopening plan, the Catholic Diocese is bumping up capacity limits for churches just in time for Palm Sunday.

It was five people per every 1,000 square feet, but starting Friday, churches can hold Masses with up to 50 percent capacity.

“It’s a vast improvement over Holy Week last year when we had no more than 10 people. 50 percent capacity allows us to use the capacity of some of our larger churches in ways that up to now we haven’t been able to,” Bishop Robert Deeley said.

Deeley added that the church is a gathered community that draws strength from being together, so these raised limits are especially important for their community.