A DECISION HAS BEEN REACHED REGARDING THE DATE FOR THE LIFTING OF THE DISPENSATION OF THE FAITHFUL TO ATTEND MASS ON SUNDAYS AND HOLY DAYS OF OBLIGATION.
ARCHBISHOP MITCHELL ROZANSKI IS LIFTING THE DISPENSATION AS OF JULY 1, 2021.
( This means that we are again under the normal obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days.)
We understand that these continue to be uncertain times for everyone, and we want all to feel safe returning to Mass. Please note that parishioners who are sick, homebound, immunocompromised and gravely concerned for their health retain the dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass, which has always been the case in normal times. These people are still excused from Mass obligation.
Here at St. Monica, you will notice that pews have been opened up somewhat. Only every third pew is roped off, not every other one. This will allow us to accommodate those returning to Mass after a long absence, and to see our church pretty much filled as normal. As you find your pew, please exert the care and caution we have all grown used to and sit separately in your pew from those who may be right in front of or behind you.
As a reminder, the archdiocese directs that individuals who are not fully vaccinated should follow CDC guidelines and wear a mask throughout Mass except for Communion.
Masks remain optional for those who are fully vaccinated. I will continue to wear a mask when entering a service, at Communion, and greeting in the foyer. We are a long way from this pandemic being “over”; parts of our state are still experiencing spikes of infections, and variant strains are prowling around the world and our country. Please don’t think things are “opening back up” to some previous normal. We will cautiously increase the music people at Masses, mostly with social distancing between them. The safe return of Holy Water in the Holy Water fonts, hymnals and missalettes and the usage of offertory baskets are all for a later date here. The distribution of the Chalice of the Precious Blood during Holy Communion remains prohibited until further notice from the US Catholic Bishops.
On other matters—I was not on vacation this week! That note was written by Msgr. Blood, and at least on some bulletins his name wasn’t attached. I hope he had a great refreshing time. I’ll be travelling the end of July.
Our school registration for the coming year just in K through 8 is 27 kids ahead of last year at this time! We’ve added a new position, a reading specialist who will help kids who need a bit more help. This will be a great joy to the many new families from this current year, and those new in the fall also. We have another exciting hire that I’ll speak more about next week, for school religion and sacraments, PSR, and young adults and beyond. So with 2 new positions we’re building on the great spirit we’ve had this year, especially our enthusiastic newer parents.
Finally, we’ve added a part-time business assistant in the Parish office, for bill payments, tuition, and census tracking. We’re already getting quality information from her. And have you noticed that our parish website now includes a comprehensive parish and school calendar? This was done at the urging of some of our very active people, and Patty spent a lot of time using new software to set it up.