Coronavirus Updates

November 17, 2020

Dear Monsignor, Father, and Pastoral Director,

 

Our medical experts contacted our office last week to update us on the dramatic rise in COVID-19 cases and the demand it is taking on our health care professionals and local health care resources. They have asked us to communicate with you the importance of your leadership in our communities to support all the safety measures that have been established to mitigate this rampant growth in cases.

 

Doctors have evidence that mitigation strategies like wearing a mask, social distancing, and washing hands for 20 seconds with soap and water is working, and we must continue following all of these strategies if we want to make sure that those who seek to attend Mass in our churches can do so in as safe an environment as possible.

 

Our medical experts are encouraged and grateful for the steps the diocese has taken to protect the faithful, but we need your help to continue ensuring that these strategies are appropriately in place.

  1. Masks or other appropriate facial coverings are required for participation in all worship and parish events. This is to be understood in accordance with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Masks must cover a person’s nose and mouth.  
    1. As a rule, liturgical ministers in the sanctuary should not wear face coverings, except when distributing Holy Communion. They should be especially attentive to maintaining a safe social distance.
    2. If a parishioner arrives without a mask, please ask them to put one on for the wellbeing of others. However, please also keep pastoral sensitivity in mind when making this request.
  2. Continue to make sure proper social distancing is maintained at Mass and at other times throughout the campus.
  3. Parishes should hold all non-liturgical events remotely during the ‘Pause to Save Lives’ epidemic order window.
  4. Parishes are required to have a sign-in mechanism for any event hosted on campus and must be able to assist with contact tracing should the need arise. Sign-ups for Mass are strongly encouraged.

 

Your parishioners trust you and are looking for your reassurance during these times. Please help keep our community safe and make sure that these mitigation strategies are followed in the parish and school.

More information can be found on the CDC’s informational page: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

Fraternally yours in Christ, 

 Most Reverend David J. Walkowiak

Bishop of Grand Rapids

 

November 16, 2020

Beginning on Tuesday…the Parish Office will be open Monday-Thursday, 8 am-noon. This will last 3 weeks, to comply with the State of Michigan guidance. Staff will be checking messages and emails from home on a regular basis. Stewardship envelopes may still be placed in the box outside of the office. Thank you.

 

Bishop Walkowiak is extending the dispensation until January 4, given the current circumstances. This will include the December 8 Holyday. Please see his letter attached.

Bishop-Walkowiak-Letter-Parishioners-COVID-19-Nov-16-2020

Oct. 20, 2020

Effective immediately, the Parish Office is not receiving visitors. Please call the parish office for any assistance you may need and we will be happy to assist you over the phone. If you have an appointment with Fr. Mark or Fr. Luis, please be seated in the Gathering Area and call the parish office.  You will be greeted there.

 

EXTENSION THROUGH NOVEMBER 23, 2020 OF THE DISPENSATION FROM THE OBLIGATION TO ATTEND SUNDAY MASS

Please read Bishop Walkowiak’s full letter here.

bishop-walkowiak-letter-parishioners-covid-19-oct-5-2020

 

May 26, 2020

Please read updated letter from Fr. Mark about returning to mass guidlines.

Dear Parishioners,

     We will begin celebrating mass in the parish on Friday, May 29, 2020, according to our normal schedule.  But this is the only “normal” item.  

 

    • The Chapel will re-open Friday and remain open for personal prayer with a limit of 10 people at a time.  Mask required age 2+.

 

  • Daily mass will be celebrated in the main church with social distancing.

 

    • Eucharistic Adoration will be in church, Tuesday’s, 5:30-6:30 pm.

 

  • When entering the church, do so by means of the main entrance only.  Mask required age 2+.  Those with disabilities may enter church through chapel entrance.

 

    • Sacrament of Penance in the Chapel, Saturday’s at 3:30 pm.  Mask required.

 

  • Exiting the church can be done through both exits, with social distancing.  No gathering after mass in Gathering Space.

 

    • We are only allowed a maximum of 250 people per mass.  

 

    • Instead of coming to a mass on the weekend with larger crowds, consider attending a weekday mass with a smaller group in attendance

 

  • Persons age 65+ and people with health issues should consider refraining from returning to weekend masses.  

 

    • All Catholics are dispensed from their Sunday obligation through June.
    • The 4:30 pm mass on Saturday will be live-streamed on Facebook and the parish website.

 

  • The main restrooms will be locked.  The restrooms near the Chapel & the Vestry will be open and sanitized after each mass.

 

    • Certain pews will be closed.  Practice social distancing in open pews.

 

  • Families may sit together without social distancing.

 

    • There will be no Offertory procession.  Offertory envelopes may be brought forward at Communion and placed in the baskets provided.  You may also mail your envelope to the office, use electronic giving, or text to give.

 

  • For communion:  only 3 distribution stations; approach single file using social distancing; leave mask on until you are next to receive communion, then replace afterward; reception of the Eucharist in the hand is highly recommended and appreciated.  No blessing of children.  The Precious Blood will not be distributed.

 

    • If you receive a gluten-free host, please see a sacristan before mass.

 

  • Reception of Communion for the homebound will take place during the communion procession.
  • Pews will be sanitized after each mass.  Volunteers welcome after mass to assist.

 

 

These guidelines will change from time to time.  Your support & compliance are appreciated.  Thank you!  Welcome back!

 

Fr. Mark