A Letter from Fr. David with an Update on Reopening
May God’s peace be with all of you! As you know the reopening of a church is a process that involves many steps before it is certified by the diocese. Our St. James the Apostle Reopening Leadership Team has been hard at work to meet all of the requirements of the Diocese of Joliet so that we will be certified. Once certified, we may reopen with limitations.There are three phases to this process. Phase One certification will allow us to begin to reopen for Baptisms, funerals, weddings and Reconciliation for up to ten people. Phase 1A certification will allow us to begin to reopen for private prayer and adoration for up to ten persons. Phase 2 certification will allow us to begin to reopen for weekday and weekend Masses for a limited number of people. Each phase requires us to demonstrate scrupulous attention to insure a safe environment for all who enter into our worship space.
We are happy to announce that as of June 4, 2020 we have received certification from the Diocese in order to move forward with the process of reopening. The weekday and weekend schedules are being determined and I look forward to sharing these with you in the near future.
With this great news, there are some important realities Bishop Pates wants us to be aware of:
1) Each church should only open for each of the three phases when we are ready and have enough volunteers trained to assist with the requirements of each unique phase.
I cannot stress enough the importance of volunteer assistance. You may hear of other churches in our area that are reopening within varying time frames. However, it is only when we can confidently assure you we have enough volunteers trained, scheduled and committed to assist with the directives we must adhere to, will we be able to schedule the celebration of Mass and the other sacraments.
Another step involves the purchase of required protection shields and sanitizing supplies. Our team has been working on this.
If you consider yourself healthy and at low risk and wish to get involved as a member of the Setup or Greeter team, please email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
2) The dispensation from the Sunday obligation to attend Mass remains in force indefinitely.
Anyone who has health concerns or who feels that they cannot return at this time are encouraged to stay home and join the Mass online. We will continue to offer the weekend Mass online indefinitely for those who are unable to attend in person.
It is important for everyone to know that preparing to come to church will be somewhat different for some time (e.g. registering to come to Mass, wearing a face mask, sanitizing one’s hands before entering the church and before receiving Holy Communion, having a seating arrangement that allows for social distancing, etc.) The Mass itself does not change but some of the exterior practices will be new for us.
Finally, our team would like to thank you for your ongoing cooperation with all of the directives of the Church and your patience with the process. Truly it is an expression of love for the common good. Please stay attuned to the parish Flocknotes for continued updates and news.You are remembered in my daily Masses and prayers. May God bless us all!
Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity
We invite you to participate in this weekend’s Mass online celebrating the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity. Click the button below to watch and as always you will find the order of service, Fr. David’s homily and the Sunday bulletin available for you to download and/or print.
Thank You to All Who Celebrated Fr. David’s Anniversary!
Fr. David was most blessed by all of the various outreaches of kindness in honor of his 36th Anniversary of Ordination. He thanks all who made his day very special, including those who joined in the parade–an expression he says he will never forget because of the unique times in which we are living! Below is a clip of the parade.
Novena for an End to Racism Begins on Sunday
The National Knights of Columbus invite all to pray a Novena for an End to Racism beginning this Sunday. You may find the prayer by clicking on the link here: http://www.kofc.org/en/resources/communications/national-unity-novena.pdf