Dear Brothers and Sisters,

In consultation with health authorities and the Diocesan Presbyteral Council Bishop Guglielmone has lifted the general dispensation from Mass obligation starting on the Vigil Mass for Corpus Christi on June 6. However, a partial dispensation is still in place for those who are vulnerable to COVID infection, those who are advanced in years and some other categories. Frequently Asked Questions about the partial dispensation are answered here.

This means the celebration of Mass should soon be back to normal with the exception of sharing the chalice and sharing the peace. All other restrictions are left to the discretion of the pastor of each parish.

This also means that the offertory procession is restored and ushers will once again take a collection. However, I would like to take this opportunity to ask you,( if you have not done so already) to sign up for automatic online giving. This is easy to do through the parish website. If you have difficulties Beth at the parish office can talk you through the process. If you use online giving, we suggest that you make a symbolic offering when the collection is taken in order to participate in the liturgical action of making your offering to God at Mass. So, for example, if I tithe fifty-five dollars a week to the parish, I give fifty dollars by online giving and put $5 in the collection basket. Thanks for your cooperation in these small matters.

As folks return to Mass in greater numbers the parking area behind the school will be re-opened. Please enter by the driveway at the North end of the campus (frontage road) and exit at the South end (James Drive). Another heads up: as the shadow of COVID recedes we need to work together to re-build our music program. The members of our girls’ choir have done an excellent job, but as choir practices are possible, we need to build choirs for all three weekend masses. Please think about whether you or a family member can help with this.

So, from June 5-6 at OLR the limited numbers at Mass, social distancing and the recommendation of masks will be lifted. However, for those who have vulnerabilities and remain concerned about infection we will retain the Friday morning 10am Mass as one preferred for older parishioners and will recommend social distancing and that masks be worn.

If you have questions or concerns about this policy, I am happy to hear them.

Your pastor,

Fr Longenecker