Mass Information

June 11, 2021

We are excited to announce that as our state moves into Phase 5, today June 11, St Mary’s also will be experiencing a lessening from our pandemic restrictions, in accord with the new Diocesan guidelines. The long Lent of 2020 is winding down! “Let us rejoice and be glad” (Psalm 118:24).

As you get ready to come to Mass this weekend, here are the new guidelines that will be set in place:

  • Mask wearing: Our Bishop is asking that we all now follow the current CDC guidelines in regard to mask wearing. Please check the link for your discernment http://www.dioceseofjoliet.org/covid19

  • To provide for varying comfort levels, the two side areas of our church seating will be set aside, for parishioners uneasy with sitting with unmasked individuals. In those areas still marked with the blue crosses, we ask that you adhere to mask wearing and social distancing as before.

  • We now have full capacity within our church building, and no longer require registration.

  • The dispensation to attend Sunday Mass remains in place for the time being, with the intention of our Bishop providing our parishes and our parishioners the opportunity to navigate and adjust to these new guidelines and protocols.

  • We will still offer hand sanitizer stations in our entranceway, though it will not be required as before. Hand sanitizer will also be available for the reception of Holy Communion, though also not required.

  • Our hymnals will return to the pews as before. Our Missalettes will return to the pews, once our new ones come in. Our kids “fun pages” will finally be returning for the little ones to receive after Mass or before the final blessing!! Our Formation Station will return to its former place.

  • Our chairs will eventually return to their pre-pandemic position, as will the “cry-room” in due time.

  • We are now allowed to have Altar Servers participating at Mass and will be soon returning to families bringing up the gifts again.

  • We will still be sanitizing our pews once a day.

  • We now have the possibility of food offerings after Mass as before the Pandemic.

  • Capacity at office and social gatherings can be at pre-pandemic, full capacity levels.

  • Adoration: These new guidelines for mask wearing, capacity, sanitation, etc., also apply to our adoration chapel.

  • In order to still allow families, the opportunity to gradually wade into these changes, we will still celebrate our 10am and 12pm (Sunday) outdoors for a little while longer. The diversity of Mass offerings has been key to our community’s ability to weather the pandemic remarkably well, and these Masses can continue to help us all to move into a post-pandemic phase with greater unity. We will keep you posted when we prepare to bring those Masses indoors and will at that time provide outdoor sound and seating for any of our parishioners not ready or unable to enter the church building at this time. We are all in this together and will make sure no one is left behind!

 

I want to take this time to thank all of our helpers who have stood in the gap to serve our parish community during this time of pandemic. I will be offering a Mass for each of your intentions! We are so grateful for the gift you are!!

Finally, as we begin to implement these new guidelines, let us remember to be respectful of one another, always giving the other the benefit of the doubt, and being especially mindful of the most vulnerable among us. “I beg you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all lowliness and meekness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit which is the bond of peace” Eph 4:1-3.

Together in Christ,

Fr. Andy

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