A Message from the Administrator and the Chairperson PPC
As you are well aware, we are still in very critical times of great danger such we have never before experienced. In the effort to return to normality in the life of the Church and the Parish, we now find ourselves in a difficult and trying situation. Please note that, under the current pandemic circumstances, the obligation for Catholics to attend Mass on Sundays or on other days does not now apply. You may prefer to continue to view Mass on the web-cam or TV stations. Persons with underlying health conditions, or those caring for them, are advised by the public health authority in order to avoid exposure to possible infection by staying away from public gatherings.
Re-opening the Church
Despite recent media reports, the directive dated 26th June 2020 from the Archbishop issued after consultation with the Chief Secretary of the Government acting on the advice of the public health authority is that churches, on reopening on the 29th June for Mass, must adhere strictly and unequivocally to admitting only a maximum number of 50 people , including the celebrant, deacon, readers, lay-ministers of Holy Communion, the sacristan, stewards, cleaners, musicians and any other helpers. In so doing, those present in the church must strictly observe the social distancing ( 2metres ) and hygiene regulations.
It has, therefore, been decided to experimentally open the church during the weekdays for 10.00 a.m. Mass with an attendance of a maximum of 50 people on Monday 29th June 2020.
This will be a time of trial to see how it goes.
This decision is provisional and carries no guarantee of continuance. This will be contingent on the parish’s ability to provide necessary care and safety for those attending. It will be subject to constant review by the PPC and the Core Group for return to worship.
The church can only remain open for services while this may be safely done in accordance with the regulations.
The PPC will critically examine the possibility of re-opening the Church for Sunday/ vigil Mass on 4/5 June
Over the past two weeks, extensive preparatory work has been carried out in the church by group of dedicated volunteers in relation to social distancing marking, spacing, door security and sanitisation facilities.
The ruling mandating the capacity of 50 people only in the church is a great challenge leaving us with two options.
- That the church remains closed for the present, or at least until 20th July when more may be allowed to attend.
- That we try to operate from a workable solution to opening the church for Mass attended by 50 people only as a trial.
Considering the second option which was accepted apprehensively by the PPC, the following measures have been provisionally decided.
- To open the church experimentally and on trial for Mass at 10.00a.m. on Weekdays bearing in mind that the attendance in the church at each Mass must be limited strictly to no more than 50 people with social distancing.
- If this cannot be done successfully, then the church will have to remain closed Mass will continue to be available on the web-cam at www.holyfamilyparish.ie
- It is hoped to resume public celebration of Mass on Sundays/ vigil, circumstances permitting as follows:- Sat. vigil of Sun. 4.30 p.m. & 6.00 p.m., Sun. 9.00 a.m.,10.30 a.m. & 12.00 noon. The maximum capacity of attendance remains at 50 people including the priest, deacon, sacristan, readers, ministers, stewards, cleaners.
- 50 is a small number of attendees and not all who like to be present will be able to be at Mass. Admission to Sunday Mass and Sat vigil Mass will be regulated by ticket only. The ticket system is a fair and structured alternative to our not opening the church at all.
- Tickets are available for collection at the Parish Office between 10.30 a.m. & 11.30 a.m Wednesday, Thursday & Friday. Each ticket is specific to a particular Mass.
- On coming to the church for Mass, you are requested to co-operate by following the guidance of the stewards for everyone’s safety.
In facing these challenges, let us pray, invoking the guidance of the Holy Spirit and the intercession of the Blessed Mother of God in these troubled and anxious times.