Father Arthur’s COVID-19 Update for Our Church
According to recent news, COVID-19 cases are on the rise. This, in turn, may be creating concerns among some. In response, I wish to provide the following information and assurances:
- Our Lady of the Wayside’s doors remain open for two weekday Masses, a Saturday Vigil Mass, and three Sunday Masses each week. (see: Mass information & registration page)
- Our Church Reopening Team is doing all within its power to ensure parishioners’ safety by adhering to strict Archdiocese and State of Illinois COVID-19 guidelines.
- Pre-registration for all who attend mass
- Limiting mass attendance to 20% of church capacity
- Restricting entrances and exits within the church
- Pre-screening (temperature monitoring and brief survey) of all who enter our church
- Enforcing strict social distancing (6 feet) protocol when seating parishioners
- Restricting traffic flow from the time parishioners enter the church until they exit
- Ensuring that parishioners wear face masks, properly and at all times
- Ensuring that parishioners use hand sanitizer prior to receiving Communion
- Confirming that our celebrants also use hand sanitizer and wear face masks and shields when distributing communion
- Thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting our church between all services
- Making reminder or procedural announcements at Mass
- Having ongoing Reopening Team meetings to review and make adjustments, as needed
- By adhering to strict safety “best practices” protocol, we have been able to keep our Church doors open to those wishing to attend the Holy Mass and other services. To date, we have been successful balancing the parishioners’ spiritual needs and safety.
- The dispensation for attending Mass has been extended by the Archdiocese. Daily and Saturday Vigil Masses will continue to be live-streamed on Facebook (and are available on-demand thereafter) to provide those unable or not quite ready to attend live Mass the opportunity to attend virtually and make a Spiritual Communion. If you feel sick, are hesitant, or are considered part of the ‘vulnerable population,’ we encourage you to continue attending mass virtually for the time being.
These are challenging times for Our Lady of the Wayside, for our Archdiocese, and for churches across our country. We understand and share our parishioners’ concerns and are doing all within our power to provide a safe environment to offer the Holy Mass and provide the Sacraments.
Please continue to pray for all affected by this pandemic. Our Lady of the Wayside, pray for us and keep us safe!
Yours in Christ,
Tags: #covid19, #mass, #oldparish, #olw, #olwparish, #reopening, #safety