Updates on Masses

May 16, 2020

Dear Parishioners,

You might have heard that the Governor has permitted churches to begin gathering at 50% occupancy starting this weekend. Bishop Knestout has released the latest instructions for all churches in a detailed 59 page manual. Please note that as we move foward, we are in a state of maximum precaution.

  • No one is permitted to have a public Mass until the weekend of 5/23-24

  • Each parish must submit a detailed plan for approval on the layout of the church for social distancing, and the organization of ushers and cleaners to coordinate each Mass

  • There is no requirement to attend Mass in this transition phase, and in fact you will not be permitted to enter the church if you meet one of the following:

      • You have been in contact with anyone with COVID-19

      • You have any new symptoms of cough or shortness of breath

      • You or anyone in your household had a fever within the past 2 weeks.

Actual capacity of the church for gatherings will turn out to be much smaller than 50%, perhaps more like 20%. Since we need time to form our teams of ushers and rehearse the complicated logistics for all Masses, this is going to be a process. If you are anxious to come to Mass, please be patient, keep joining us for live-stream, and let us work out all of the kinks.

For the weekend of 5/23, there will be one public Mass on Saturday at 5pm at Sacred Heart. This is the only location where we already have a time ready to rehearse all of the details. I have consulted continually with the leadership at St. John and St. James and there is a strong preference for precaution above all. Furthermore, we cannot open the doors until we organize the teams and rehearse how Mass will work.

On Wednesday May 27th I will give an update on the plan for the following weekend, reviewing the latest news and parish recommendations. I am doing my best to keep everyone's needs in mind, as well as encourage you all to love the Lord in this strange time of transition.

Sincerely,

Fr. Joe