15TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME (July 12): Our live stream for this Sunday’s Mass is available by clicking the photo below if you are unable to attend in person.
We will start the live feed early. If we have any technical difficulties, click here for a back-up live stream that we will try to initiate before the 11 a.m. Mass.
PARISH COUNCIL POSITIONS OPEN: The terms of two members of our Parish Pastoral Council have come to an end. Fr. Richard and the Council are looking for parishioners interested in filling these roles. The Parish Pastoral Council meets monthly and advises Father on church matters. As the church makes its way through the Covid-19 situation, we need creative, out-of-the-box thinkers to lead the parish. If you feel called to this position, please submit a letter to Fr. Richard as soon as possible containing a short bio and how you might serve the parish.
SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION: Fr. Richard will be hearing Confessions once again at the regular time (4:15 p.m. Saturdays before the 5 p.m. Vigil). For the health and safety of the priest and penitent, all Confessions will be outside (weather permitting). A portable Confession screen will be set up in the carport of the Administration building. Please wait at a safe and respectful distance (such as in your car or down the driveway) while others’ confessions are being heard.
REMINDER FROM FR. RICHARD: “A word about how we do the reception of Communion. As you know, we receive Holy Communion at St. Therese once Mass is over. That is only temporary. Hopefully before too long we can go back to the regular way in which Communion is distributed. But we do it now that way primarily for health reasons. At the same time, it is important to note that Holy Communion is always distributed at the end of Mass. It is done that way for a reason. Often we come into the church and the doors open up, so we come in and pray. But after Mass, the doors open up again. Why? So we can go out. Remember our Lord’s final command to the Disciples before he ascended into Heaven was that they were to go and make disciples of all nations, teaching them everything that our Lord had taught them. And he made the promise that he would be with them always. So that’s really what is happening at the end of Mass. We are actually fulfilling that mandate to go out and bring Jesus to the world. That’s why we receive Communion at the very end. Jesus is with us. We’re like living flesh-and-blood tabernacles. We’re meant to be prophets to the world. So we’re not meant to stay here after we receive Communion. When we receive Communion, we are commissioned to go out into the world, to be the Body of Christ, to be Jesus, to be his hands, to be his feet, to be his mind, to be his heart to a world that so desperately needs that love.”
THE WORD AMONG US: If following along during Mass (either at home or in person) has become difficult for you without our regular “Breaking Bread” missals that used to be in the pews, consider using the publication “The Word Among Us”! This publication is provided to the church, and it contains daily readings and meditations, as well as all the regular liturgical prayers. Stop by the office to pick up the July/August issue to use at home or take to Mass with you. (If you are unable to get to the office, contact Olivia Kuhens and she will get a copy to you.)
NEW SAFE ENVIRONMENT PROGRAM: The Diocese will be implementing a new online program (CMG Connect Safe Haven) that all parish volunteers who come into contact with minors and/or vulnerable adults will be required to complete. (This program will take the place of the Virtus curriculum we have been using.) An official description of the program can be found by clicking here. In summary:
- Volunteers such as ushers, catechists, choir members, Scout leaders, youth group leaders, Eucharistic Ministers, collection counters, and those who visit the homebound must go through the program.
- Volunteers must have a background check (completed by CMG Connect and re-done every five years). The parish will pay the fee of the background check. Note: A background check is not necessary if you have completed one in the past five years (since July 1, 2015). You will be notified by the diocese if you fall into this category.
- The curriculum includes videos in both English and Spanish with accountability questions at the end of each segment. There is no required in-person training as before.
- Those who have already been certified through VIRTUS and completed a background check within the past five years will only need to create an account on CMG Connect, enter the date of their background check (if you don’t know this, the office will get it for you), and watch the videos.
- Individuals who have been VIRTUS trained and had a background check before 2015 will be required to create an account on CMG Connect, watch the videos, and submit for a new background check.
- If you are ready to get started and are a volunteer who does NOT have financial responsibilities, click here for your instructions. If you are a volunteer WITH financial responsibilities (bookkeeper, business manager), click here for your instructions.
MEETING PROTOCOLS: Bishop Stika has issued new directives regarding meetings and gatherings on diocesan and parish property as federal, state, and local health authorities continue to monitor the Coronavirus pandemic. (Click here to read the Bishop’s full mandate.) Meeting details are as follows:
- Meetings can include a maximum of 50 participants
- Social distancing (6 feet) and masks are REQUIRED for all participants. Attendees may forgo masks if safe distancing of 12 feet is enforced.
- Attendees must be screened before meetings begin
- Attendance lists are required
- Video conferencing and online streaming should be used whenever possible
MASS PROTOCOLS: Father and Deacon Dan have outlined protocols and procedures for those attending Mass in person as we reopen our doors this weekend. Please adhere to the precautions and safety instructions that apply to our building so that we might stay in compliance with the Bishop’s directives. These guidelines are for the healthy and well-being of our staff as well as those who are worshiping with us. You can view that video here.
COVID-19 RESPONSE: For the health and safety of Fr. Richard, Deacon Dan, and all those who choose to attend Mass in person, we will follow strict guidelines set by Bishop Stika (social distancing, use of masks, routes through building). Please know we will adhere to rules regarding seating, church capacity, and receiving Holy Communion.
***GENTLE REMINDER: The Bishop has extended dispensation from Mass indefinitely for all those who are ill, vulnerable, or uncomfortable with going to church. St. Therese and St. Joseph will continue to live stream Sunday Masses.
JULY HELP: Thank you to all who helped with the opening of our building at the end of May. As we continue to celebrate Mass under the guidelines set by the Bishop, volunteers to usher and sanitize the church will be needed each month. Please check out this survey and use that link if you are willing to help with this important and necessary job. Cleaning after Masses is simple and straightforward and all materials will be provided. Please consider signing up so parishioners and visitors can attend Mass in a safe and clean environment. Even working on weekend a month helps. Many hands make light work!
PRAY THE ROSARY: We will suspend recitation of the rosary before Mass until further notice, but consider praying the Rosary alone or with your family. It is needed now more than ever. On Mondays and Saturdays, we pray the Joyful Mysteries. Say the Sorrowful Mysteries on Tuesdays and Fridays. The Glorious Mysteries are prayed on Wednesdays and Sundays. And the Luminous Mysteries are prayed on Thursdays.