Dear Brothers and Sisters,

As we continue through the month of June, we are seeing an increase in the numbers of COVID-19 cases in South Carolina, and Greenville County is leading in the number of new cases. Over this past week a deacon and a priest in our diocese have been diagnosed with the illness and are in quarantine.

Therefore, we will continue with the same restrictions on Mass attendance that we had in place in May. The Mass obligation is still suspended and no more than 100 people may attend Mass. The elderly and those with underlying conditions should still take precautions and all of us should continue to limit our social gatherings, restrict our activities and practice good hygiene. Please use caution and common sense!

At Our Lady of the Rosary meetings are still restricted, but there are a few small scale exceptions. Any requests for group meetings should be referred to Donna Craft at dcraft@charlestondiocese.org who will instruct you on best practice. The church office is open with limited hours and access. The food pantry is opening this Saturday, but with restrictions still in place.

This Sunday we celebrate the Solemnity of Corpus Christi-the Body of Christ present with us in the Eucharist. Bishop Guglielmone has called on parishes to celebrate the feast in a traditional way with Eucharistic Adoration, a procession and Benediction. Therefore, this Sunday at 3 pm we will have a special celebration of Corpus Christi beginning with Adoration in the Upper Church then a procession, prayers and Benediction at the All Souls Chapel (Memorial Garden).

I’d like to take this opportunity to mention that we hope to move forward with the completion of the All Souls Chapel and landscaping of the East side of the campus (Augusta Road side) this summer. Due to your generosity this beautiful project will be completed and become a focus for remembering our departed loved ones. It will also provide a nice quiet space for reflection and prayer.

As we celebrate Corpus Christi we should all thank God for the Eucharistic presence of Christ among us—remembering that his presence is most focused in the Eucharist, but it also present with us in the Sacred Scriptures, the person and ministry of the priest, the gathering of the faithful  and in the person of the poor and suffering in the world.

Therefore, let us offer our prayers and petitions for all those who are suffering as the result of racial violence, COVID-19 and the other troubles besieging our world at this difficult time.

The Cursillo group based here at Our Lady of the Rosary invites you to be part of a rosary campaign at the parish. Each Sunday morning, starting this Sunday, June 14, at 10am, immediately before the 10:30am Mass, we will lead the rosary prayers. Whether you are in church or not, we encourage you to join us in prayer at this time.

The purpose of this is twofold:

 1) To promote praying the rosary within “Our Lady of the Rosary” parish, and

 2) For healing, both physically and spiritually, within our country during these tumultuous times.

 We would also encourage others in the parish (and beyond) to pray the rosary EACH day, in addition to Sundays for this purpose.

Since folks have been enjoying videos of great hymns, HERE is one of the choir of Kings College, Cambridge singing O God Our Help in Ages Past. 

Here are the words to follow:

1  Oh God, our help in ages past
Our hope for years to come
Our shelter from the stormy blast
And our eternal home

2  Under the shadow of thy throne
Thy saints have dwelt secure
Sufficient is thine arm alone
And our defense is sure

3  Before the hills in order stood
Or earth received her frame
From everlasting thou’ art God
To endless years the same

4  A thousand ages in thy sight
Are like an evening gone
Short as the watch that ends the night
Before the rising sun

5  Time, like an ever-rolling stream
Bears all its sons away
They fly, forgotten, as a dream
Dies at the opening day

6  Oh God, our help in ages past
Our hope for years to come
Be thou’ our guide while troubles last
And our eternal home

Thank you for your support and prayers. God be with you!

Your Pastor,

Fr. Longenecker