Read Letter from Bishop Wack, March 19, 2020
Overview of Changes March 18, 2020
Dear brothers and sisters,
Before going into detail about the various aspects of what has changed and what we can do about it (those will be in subsequent, daily emails), I wanted to send out a succinct overview of what is changing at our parish during the coronavirus pandemic.
- All public Masses are suspended. I will still celebrate Mass privately and remember you all at Mass. Obviously, you are excused from you obligation to attend Sunday Mass.
- Religious education is suspended. I will be looking for some resources so parents can use this time to hand on the faith to their children.
- Get Fed/adult faith formation is suspended. I will also be sending out some online resources to inform your faith.
- Stations of the Cross and soup supper are suspended. I'll email you something on Friday about the Stations of the Cross.
- Scheduled times for confession are suspended for now, but I will try to come up with a solution so people can easily make use of this great sacrament of mercy. Obviously, I am available by appointment.
- Sacraments for the sick are available. That includes the anointing of the sick and communion to the sick. If you are sick and need pastoral care, call the office (227-1417).
- The church is open for prayer during regular business hours (around 9 to 5). Please exercise good hygiene when coming to the church and keep a safe distance from other people present.
- Special group meetings and events are suspended (e.g. Altar Society, Men's Club).
- People will still be in need of food assistance, and there may be greater need if people have to stay away from work. If you are able, drop off non-perishable food items at inside the entrance to the church so we can donate them to the food pantry.
- Baptisms will be celebrated with only the child, priest, parents, and godparents present.
- Funerals will be celebrated graveside, with the Rite of Committal and Final Commendation. I will also celebrate Mass for the deceased privately, or after the suspension of public Mass has been lifted.
- Weddings...We don't have many wedding here, but if one occurs while we are still under these restrictions, it will be celebrated with only the bride, groom, priest (or deacon), and two witnesses present.
Stay tuned for subsequent announcements, detailing how we are addressing some of these changes. Although this is a time that a lot of things are being taken away, it is not a time we are helpless. This can and should be an opportunity for grace!
Fr. Chris Winkeljohn
Update: Sunday Mass from Fr, Chris Winkeljohn, March 19, 2020
Read the entire PDF
Excerpts from PDF:
Read the readings for Sunday's Mass, and spend some time praying with them. They can be found on the website of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and many other places. Do it daily if you can, but certainly do it every Sunday. Continue to carve out time with the Lord, to listen to him and pray to him.
Watch Mass online. There is no substitute for being at Mass. But when that is impossible, some people may like to watch it on TV or online. There will be a homily to hear, to explain the readings at Mass.
There are many places to watch Mass online, but here are a few:
Mass Responses and Prayers
Update: Staions of the Cross from Fr, Chris Winkeljohn, March 20, 2020
Ordinarily, we would be making the Stations of the Cross this evening...
...but since all public gatherings are suspended, we have the opportunity to make them in our homes, but still in communion with one another. When we make the Stations of the Cross, we are vividly reminded that Jesus did not run away from suffering and the feeling of abandonment. It reminds us that he is still near us, even when we can’t be near him in the Mass.
There are many forms and versions of the Stations of the Cross. If you have one in a book at home, today would be a good time to use it.
Here are a few other options to make the Stations of the Cross:
Update: Online Resources from Fr, Chris Winkeljohn, March 21, 2020
Since you will probably be spending a lot of time at home in the coming weeks, and because we can't hold our weekly Get Fed and religious education, we have some online resources for you.
The first resource is Formed. You may recognize some of the videos from things we have shown at the parish. There is a lot to explore, so check it all out! To sign up for free, go to Formed.org/signup.
The other resource is Word on Fire. We made this available about two years ago, and we've made it available again! You can watch on your smart TV and mobile devices through the Word on Fire app.
Update: More Information from Fr, Chris Winkeljohn, March 21, 2020
We are changing the office hours at the parish for the time being. The office will now be open Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9:00am to 1:00pm, Eastern Time. People are encouraged to call, rather than stop by; but during these times, Dona will be there to answer the phone. If there is an emergency while the office is closed, there is an emergency number on our voicemail. The church will still remain open every day for personal prayer, 9:00am to 5:00pm.
- If it is not a hardship for you during this time, consider supporting the parish with online giving. About 80% of the parish's income comes in through the Sunday, in person collections. As long as we don't have public Masses, we are losing a good percentage of our income. To sign up for online giving, go here: www.osvonlinegiving.com/4523
- Please remember in your prayers the soul of Cheryl Miller, a parishioner who passed away this past weekend. She was a faithful Saturday evening mass-goer and she will be missed. Please also keep her husband Ernie, her children, and all her loved-ones in your prayers.