March 18, 2020
Dear Parish Family,
I thought you would appreciate a note from your pastor during this challenging time. This is a national emergency and public health pandemic. We are urged to honor the President’s request to stay home as much as possible, and not gather in groups, large or small, to contain the spread of the virus.
Bishop Peter has asked us to do the same. We ask you to understand the public health concerns involved and the wisdom in the cancellation of all Masses (daily and weekend) and all parish activities until further notice. You have been exempted from your weekly obligation.
I will celebrate Mass each day privately for the intentions that were requested and for the people of Sacred Heart Parish, both living and deceased. You will be remembered each day and this Mass is celebrated for all in a prudent way until further notice by our bishop.
We live in a dangerous neighborhood and must be cautious. The church will not be open during this time as I cannot guarantee who will be coming in to pray and their exposure to the virus infecting others and violating social distancing. This includes our Adoration chapel which has access to the church and hall. We will re-evaluate this situation in a few weeks.
Since there will be no Mass celebrated publicly, I believe we need to be consistent about gathering in this time of national emergency and pray we can return to normalcy sooner than later. It is truly time to make your home your domestic church. This is time to truly Yearn for the Eucharist! This particular time should give us a greater appreciation for the Holy Mass and Adoration, which we often take for granted.
I have enclosed this blessed prayer card of the Sacred Heart for you to find a place of honor in your home, and as a reminder that you are being prayed for by me each day, and each family called by name from our parish census. Please pray together, watch the Mass on TV if you choose (which is broadcast from venues) and please don’t forget your parish offertory gift! We are keeping activities to a minimum, and office hours may be reduced. Please send in your envelopes or wait until we gather again. Life continues despite the emergency and we must meet our financial obligations. I realize that many of you do not care for online giving, but I encourage it as we need to pay our bills! It might be time for you to consider it and Julie will help you with that (please call the parish office).
Hoping to see you soon! Be at peace! God is with us! He is forever Emmanuel! Let us use this time of sacrifice as our spiritual communion with Jesus. In our desire to receive Him, Jesus comes into our soul, as we honor the national emergency together. Prudence is the cardinal virtue so let us be wise and prudent!
Father Steve Marcoux, Your pastor