Preparing to reopen for weekday Mass
I hope this message finds you and your family continuing to stay well during these challenging times. I also hope you had a safe and happy 4th of July weekend.
Today I would like to speak with you about our plans to gradually reopen The Basilica for public worship. At this point, while we have encountered some technical issues in setting up our new livestreaming equipment, we still hope to begin inviting people to attend our Noon daily Mass beginning Wednesday, July 15.
In regard to daily Mass, if you are over the age of 65, or if you have some health issues, or if you fall into a vulnerable category for some reason, I would hope that you would not register to attend Mass at this time.
If you do wish to attend one of these daily Masses you will need to preregister the day before. You can do this on our website, the day before the Mass you want to attend. When you register, you will need to provide contact information, in the unlikely event that we need to do some contact tracing.
When you arrive for Mass you will need to wear a face mask and be checked-in by a member of our staff. The check-in point is at the accessible doors on the East side of The Basilica, between The Basilica and Cowley Center. After being checked-in you will then be shown to a seat. We ask that you continue to wear your facemask, and remain in that seat, until the Mass has ended. Communion will be distributed after the Mass has ended. To help explain these protocols we have prepared a brief video which will be available on our website.
I realize these protocols may seem excessive to some, but in an abundance of caution and with a concern for the common good, as your pastor, I am convinced that at this time, this is the best way to proceed. If you would like further information about these protocols or if you have questions or concerns, please contact me at the parish office or send me an email. My contact information is available on our parish website.
I also want to reassure you, that when we reopen The Basilica for public worship, we will continue to livestream our liturgies and services. Once we are up and running for daily Mass, and have worked out any kinks in our protocols, we hope to open The Basilica for public Sunday Mass. We hope to this beginning the first part of August.
Once we have reopened The Basilica for Sunday Mass, one Sunday a month we will also celebrate the sacrament of baptism for infants, and the Sacrament of Confirmation for those adults who were a part of our R.C.I.A program this past year. Later this summer we will also discuss how to celebrate First Communion and Confirmation with our elementary and high school students.
As I close today, I ask for your prayers for our staff, our parish leadership, our parish, and our community, that we might be open to the guidance of God’s good Spirit during these challenging times.
A Prayer for Our Uncertain Times
All Mighty God,
May we who are merely inconvenienced remember those whose lives are at stake.
May we who have no risk factors remember those most vulnerable.
May we who have the luxury of working from home remember those who must choose between preserving their health and making their rent.
May we who have the flexibility to care for our children when their schools close remember those who have no options.
May we who have to cancel our trips remember those who have no safe place to go.
May we who settle in for a quarantine at home remember those who have no home.
As fear grips our country, let us choose love.
And during this time when we may not be able to physically wrap our arms around each other, let us yet find ways to be the loving embrace of God to our neighbors. Amen.
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