REOPENING OF SAINT LAWRENCE FOR MASSES ON THE 25TH AND 26TH JULY 2020
11th July 2020
Dear Esteemed Parishioner,
Good evening and I hope this email meets you well? I wish to thank you for your love, patience, support, prayers for each other and seeking each other out at these extraordinary times.
Please, I wish to share the following points with you. Kindly take note especially of the points made clearly below
- It is important to reaffirm that, at present, the obligation to attend Sunday Mass remains suspended. Thus for this reason, Masses on Sundays will be at 9am, 10:15am and 5:00pm (Children's Liturgy will continue at 11:15am every Sunday). But also Masses at 10:00am on Wednesdays will stand out as a significant day in our parish, though coffee meetings will not hold. Please kindly reach out to me and indicate which mass you wish to attend as in individual or a family. I will respond by allocating a pew and space for you or your family
- Please be aware that there will be a limit on the number of people who can attend Mass in our churches. This will determined locally in accordance with social distancing requirements. To this effect I have attached a little map of the sitting arrangements in the church. The sitting arrangements allow for 25 individuals, but 5 pews have been designated for families of four or more. So the family pews can accommodate 4 at the least. This makes room for an additional 20 persons, taking the capacity of our church to 45 at each mass.
We therefore need to reflect carefully on how and when we might be able to attend Mass. We cannot return immediately to our customary practices. This next step is not, in any sense, a moment when we are going 'back to normal.'
- Kindly think carefully about how and when you wish to return to Mass. As you will notice, I have added a mass to Sunday (9am) and adjusted 10am to 10:15am. Nonetheless, given there is no Sunday obligation, I kindly ask you to consider the possibility of attending Mass on a weekday (Monday, Wednesday or Friday). This will ease the pressure of numbers for Sunday celebrations and allow a gradual return to the Eucharist for more people.
- Moving forward, there will still be many people who cannot attend Mass in person. We therefore shall continue to live-streaming Sunday and weekday Masses, both for those who remain shielding and vulnerable, and also for those unable to leave home because of advanced age or illness.
- When we return to Mass there will some differences in how the celebration takes place. For the time being, there will be no congregational singing and Mass will be shorter than usual. None of this detracts from the centrality of our encounter with the Risen Christ in the Eucharist. I kindly ask everyone to respect and follow the guidance/instructions in our church.
- The Sacrament of Reconciliation resumes on Saturday 18th July at 5:15pm in the church.
...... Each Parishioner is to attend mass wearing a face mask. Please this is essential.
....... Please once you get to the door, sanitise your hands before going to your designated seat. You will equally receive some wipes sanitizer to clean up where you sit after mass. Please make sure you clean where you have sat or knelt at mass.
....... Church toilets, Children's room, and parish room will not be in use.
....... During the mass, the Stewards will invite parishioners on each pew to step forward for communion or to receive a blessing, maintaining the social distance rules.
........ Once the mass is over, parishioners are advised to sit calmly and allow the stewards to invite you to leave the church in an orderly fashion through the exit door by the tabernacle.
....... The offertory will be at the end of mass with a basket at the exit door where you may drop your offering
....... Readers will sanitize before and after reading (Provisions will be made for you)
....... the Chalice will not be in use for parishioners, thus only one Eucharistic minister will be needed at weekend masses. The Eucharistic minister shall sanitise before and after administering the Eucharist to parishioners.
- Please if you have questions regarding the reception of any of the sacraments, kindly contact the Fr Benedict Via email or a phone Call.
- THERE WILL BE A ZOOM MEETING OF PARISHIONERS ON THE 18TH JULY 2020, TO CLARIFY OR RESPOND TO ANY QUESTIONS. PLEASE IF YOU ARE FREE, KINDLY ATTEND. See the link below (IT IS IN THE EMAIL SENT TO YOU)
Prayer to Mary, Mother of Hope
Mary, Mother of hope, accompany us on our journey!
Teach us to proclaim the living God;
help us to bear witness to Jesus, the one Saviour;
make us kindly towards our neighbours,
welcoming to the needy, concerned for justice,
impassioned builders of a more just world;
intercede for us as we carry out our work in history,
certain that the Father's plan will be fulfilled.
Dawn of a new world,
show yourself the Mother of hope and watch over us!
Watch over the Church in Europe:
may she be transparently open to the Gospel;
may she be an authentic place of communion;
may she carry out fully her mission of
proclaiming, celebrating and serving the Gospel of hope for the peace and joy of all.
Queen of Peace, Protect the men and women of the third millennium!
Watch over all Christians: may they advance confidently on the path of unity,
as a leaven of harmony for the continent.
Watch over young people: the hope of the future,
may they respond with generosity to the call of Jesus.
Watch over the leaders of nations:
may they be committed to building a common house
which respects the dignity and rights of every person.
Mary, give us Jesus!
Grant that we may follow him and love him!
He is the hope of the Church, of Europe and of all humanity!
He lives with us, in our midst, in his Church!
With you we say: "Come, Lord Jesus" (Rev 22:20).
May the hope of glory which he has poured into our hearts bear fruits of justice and peace! ( St John Paul II, Ecclesia in Europa, 125)
MAY GOD BLESS YOU AS YOU PREPARE TO RETURN TO THE PHYSICAL CONGREGATION AT THE HOLY MASS.
YOUR SERVANT PRIEST,