This is part 2 of instructions about public Mass reopening. Please see the message dated May 14 which gives important instructions about if you should come, and what you should do prior to coming, etc.
Public Masses will begin on Monday, May 18th. Here are some things you need to know if you plan to come to mass at St. Catherine’s.
We are going to ask you to follow directions as we celebrate Mass and the only reason why we are asking is for your safety and the safety of all in church.
There are no missalettes or hymnals, no song sheets, we will try to pick music all know and can sing. You may bring your own missal; you may print out your own copy of the readings available from the USCCB website. Be sure to take everything with you when you leave, don’t leave anything in the pews.
There is no print version of the bulletin, it is available on the parish website.
The priests are not allowed by the archbishop to greet you either entering or leaving. Yes, we will miss that.
There can be no congregating in groups while here for Mass. Neither coming in or going out should you break strict social distancing with individuals or members of other families. If you visit others from the confines of your car, please be attentive to moving on if vehicles are pulling in for the next Mass. You might find a space to park and catch up from car to car in the parking spaces at the southern end of the property.
Mass will be very different in some ways and the same in other ways, the differences exist in order to create space enough for us to be together at church, but not a danger to one another. We are proud of the sense of community that exists in our parish, but we will suspend that building community experience until the pandemic is over.
A face mask is a requirement: You must wear a face mask to enter and must wear your face mask whenever you are in moving about, so as you enter until you are seated, when coming for communion, and when leaving. Once seated you may pull your mask down. While not required, we encourage you to leave it on the entire time except when consuming communion.
Hand sanitizer is available on the gathering space table, please make use of it.
There will be no procession with the gifts (offertory procession)
No sharing a sign of peace
There will be no servers (children or adults) at this time
No passing the baskets for the collection. We will have several baskets available for you to drop your donation in, we suggest you do this on your way in, if you do it on the way out, be sure not to gather with others around the basket. We are grateful for and dependent upon your generosity and thank you.
If you need to use the gathering space to calm or quiet your child, please do, but please hold onto them and do not let them run or roam, if there are others in this space please afford proper distance.
Communion: We will have communion stations and we will have ushers to help with the flow of communion, so don’t get out to go to communion until you are asked to do so. Be sure your mask is in place, you will pull it down to your chin when you arrive at the communion minister, after you have consumed the host please pull the mask back up and on. Please be patient and attentive, we have marks on the 3 aisles to create proper distance, people will come forward, move from mark to mark as communion continues just as you would if you were in line at a store, do not bunch up. Return by the aisle marked, all aisles during communion are one way, please don’t greet anyone as you approach or leave the communion minister.
Communion will be given in the hand only, no one will receive on the tongue. To minimize the chance of touching we ask that you hold both hands flat and side by side so that they communion minister may give communion by dropping it into your hand, don’t reach to take the host, don’t raise your hands to the minister, let the minister find your hands and drop the host a very short distance into your hand.
Please do not leave until the very end of Mass, when the final hymn is finished. In order to help with social distancing and the avoidance of groups being created, you may leave from any door except the one that opens on the driveway. We will try to dismiss by sections, so wait and watch to leave when you can do so keeping households and individuals from bunching up.
Exiting: Please go to your vehicle immediately, we must disinfect and wipe down the church, bathrooms etc. after Mass finishes to ready the space for our next Mass. After the Saturday evening mass and the last mass on the weekend, our cleaners will want to clean thoroughly and be on their way home in a timely manner, so please make the sacrifice not to socialize but leave the building and return to your vehicle in as timely a manner as possible.
Please be encouraging, we likely have a variety of views about “social distancing” that said it is what has been determined must be done for “reopening”. Let’s help one another as we learn to adjust to these instructions. We value your input too.