ASH WEDNESDAY – A CHANGE IN THE DISTRIBUTION OF ASHES!
In order to safely distribute ashes this Wednesday, there will be a change in the procedure. Please see the video linked here, and embedded below, for details. Thank you!
Fr. ENRIQUE’S MESSAGE
On September 14, 2020, the dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass and Holy Days of Obligation expired, and it is the responsibility of those who are capable and not prohibited by other circumstances to attend Sunday Mass. Read Archbishop Listecki’s full message here. Please take the time to read the full message. It’s worth it!
Here is Fr. Enrique’s guidance:
“Dear brothers and sisters,
This past weekend of the 19th/20th of September marked an unprecedented time for us as Catholics in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. Archbishop Jerome Listecki updated some of the guidelines on our Catholic Comeback Matrix, making effective on September 14th that we moved to Phase 2; and he indicated that the dispensation from the obligation of Catholics to attend Sunday Mass, which he had provided since last March, was no longer to be extended beyond the weekend of September 12th/13th.
The Church joyfully proclaims in the Second Vatican Council that “the Eucharist is the source and summit of our Christian Life” (LG 11) Contrary to popular beliefs of the contemporary world, it is very unlikely that one, who is Catholic, can maintain, and live the Catholic faith and yet not attend Sunday Mass or receive the Eucharist and the other Sacraments. Now, every person who calls themselves Catholic has the responsibility to prayerfully evaluate their return to Mass. While it is certainly my hope that more and more of our parishioners will return to Mass, it does not mean that all should immediately return. This is the guidance from our Archbishop:
‘If a person is at risk because of age, underlying medical conditions or a compromised immune system, one would be excused from the obligation. If a person is caring for a sick person, even if they are not sick, they would be excused from the obligation out of charity. Fear of getting sick, in and of itself, does not excuse someone from the obligation. However, if the fear is generated because of at-risk factors, such as pre-existing conditions, age or compromised immune systems, then the fear would be sufficient to excuse from the obligation.’
As we return safely to Mass again, let me share with you some of the ways we are going to keep everyone safe:
• If you have any flu like symptoms, please stay home.
• All the doors of the church will be open, but only the main side front doors will be propped open, weather permitting.
• Face masks are required and please use hand sanitizer, at least, as you come in and before receiving Holy Communion.
• Please sit only in the marked pews and please fill the front pews first.
• If you are a family of 4 or more please sit in a pew that is empty, leaving the other pews for individuals to sit 6 feet apart as the share a pew with a person who is not from the same household.
• Please try to not sit directly in front or behind another parishioner to respect social distancing protocols.
• During the Sign of Peace, please wave or do a simple head vow to other parishioners who do not live with you in the same household. You can shake hands or do another physical gesture only with people who live with you in the same house.
• For Communion, please stay in your pew. The priest or the Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion (EMHC) will come to you. If you are receiving Communion, please feel free to stand or kneel. Please receive reverently the Body of Christ only in your hands and consume Him right away. If you are not receiving Holy Communion, please sit and crossed your arms over your chest as the priest or EMHC walk by.
• If you want to bring Holy communion to a family member at home, please bring a pyx and present it open at the time you receive the Body of Christ.
• If you can, please help us sanitize our pews and kneelers after each Mass.
• If you want to socialize with other parishioners, please do it outside respecting social distancing protocols.
• Confessions will be offer on Saturdays from 3:30 pm until 4:25pm
• After a couple of weekends, we will reevaluate if we need to add another Mass depending on numbers of parishioners returning.
Please, be patient and cooperative with our requests, directions, and expectations. All are intended for your well-being and safety. All of us have different opinions and experiences with this pandemic, so please let us be respectful of the different levels of comfort that each will demonstrate during this time.
For my brothers and sisters who would not be coming to Mass in our parish, we will continue to record the 4:30 pm Mass and make it available sometime shortly after Mass, if the technology cooperates. If you would like to receive Holy Communion at your home, please let me know by e-mail or phone call.
And as people of faith, let us continue to keep each other in prayer and ask the intercession of Saint Michael the Archangel for the end to this pandemic: ‘St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly host, by the power of God, cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls.’
Fr. J Enrique Hernandez”
Parishioners are urged to sign up for our Parish email newsletter, which includes messages with the latest information from Fr. Enrique. Among other things, the newsletter is much more suited than the weekly Bulletin to distribute rapidly-changing information! Please use the link in the orange box at the upper right to sign up.