I am eagerly waiting for the day our churches will reopen and will be able to resume all our Services/Events both religious and social.
Following the Nation, the State, the County, and the Diocese guidelines and regulations, our parishes and institutions are working together mostly in a harmonious way with regard to religious and social services and events.
Bishop Vasa has been communicating with us the priests through his bulletins, zoom meetings, mails etc in this most difficult time created by COVID-19. I too am trying my best to be in touch with all of you through Sunday Masses and Devotions on our parish website via Face Book. I have been sharing also with you Messages and Appeals from time to time through the Bulletins, Website and through E-Mail list available. Depending on the phone calls and messages, I have been hearing Confessions, giving some Spiritual Counsel, anointing the Sick, and administering the Last Rites. Soon I hope to ask someone to invite the members of the Pastoral Council, the Liturgy Committee, the Guilds, the Office Staff and others to discuss about the possibility of some religious services, like the Adoration to the Blessed Sacrament and Confessions at both our churches.
Please read the following excerpts from the recent Bulletin of Bishop Vasa:
“ZOOM CALL: Thank you for your participation in the Zoom Calls this week. I found the Deanery exchanges to be informative and edifying and look forward to our next live interaction.
COVID-19 UPDATE: Governor Newsom Guidance on Faith-Based Office Workspace & Counseling Services:Governor Gavin Newsom announced that as of May 18,2020, faith-based office workspaces and faith-based counseling services can reopen under certain guidelines. Please take time to review the guidance on office workspaces and limited services at the weblinks below.
Guidance on Office Workspaces:https://covid19.ca.gov/pdf/guidance-officeworkspaces.pdf
Guidance of Limited Services:https://covid19.ca.gov/pdf/guidance-limitedservices.pdf
At the same time the Governor expressed gratitude to churches for providing emotional and spiritual support to the communities we serve. While the gratitude is appreciated, we all feel that some additional mode of respect for pastors and the faith communities which they serve would be better. Nonetheless, this recognition does show there is awareness of the need to address the church situation at the State level.
COUNTY / CITY DETERMINATIONS: While we are still bound by divergent County Regulations, the State ‘guidance’ noted above does open for us the increased possibility of opening our offices and even churches for limited services. As I noted on the Zoom Call, schedules for Confessions should be able to be posted, our offices should be able to open with staff as needed and to the extent that you and your staff are comfortable. This is a little step but it is a step in the right direction!“
With prayerful wishes and blessings,