By CBSLA Staff

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — A smaller than usual crowd celebrated Christmas Mass Friday morning at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, in a service that looked a little different due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

FILE: A man walks through the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels March 12 in Los Angeles.  (Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/MediaNews Group/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images)

Parishioners wore face coverings and kept a minimum distance of six feet between themselves — even when taking communion.

“It is about the protection of life,” Carolina Guevara, spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, said. “This pandemic has taught us how fragile life is.”

The Archdiocese previously announced updated guidelines for its indoor religious services that were in line with protocols issued by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health following a court ruling that came down earlier this month.

The Supreme Court ruled in favor of a Pasadena church which had challenged Gov. Gavin Newsom’s restrictions on religious gatherings, arguing that they violated the First Amendment.

Archbishop Jose H. Gomez said in a letter to priests and pastors in the Archdiocese that while it would be safer to continue celebrating outdoor Mass, those who choose to offer livestreamed services only or to celebrate indoors may do so as locally permitted.

“The most important thing is that we are coming together to celebrate life, to celebrate family, and to remember that this is always hope in God,” Guevara said.

Catholics who missed this morning’s service can find a list of available livestreams and broadcasts of services in the Archdiocese online.

(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)