News and information from Fr. Henry to the Parish
May 16, 2020
Grace and Peace to you from the Risen Christ!
As per the directives this week from the Archdiocese of Detroit Department of Communications, “At the discretion of the pastor, a parish in the Archdiocese of Detroit is permitted to resume public Masses on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 under the conditions below.” We at St. Anne and St. Charles will resume public Masses on May 19th, 2020.
The regular Mass schedule will resume as normal. Weekday Masses on Mondays & Wednesdays at St. Charles at 8:30am; Tuesdays & Fridays at St. Anne at 9:00am. Weekend Masses: Saturday at St. Anne 4:30pm, Sunday at St. Charles 8am, 10am, & Noon. Sunday Masses at St. Charles will be held in the gym instead of the church (weekday Masses will be in the church). Seating need to be sanitized between each Mass. Some parishes have noticed sanitizing chemicals damaging the varnish/finish on pews; to minimize this risk, the option of the gym and using metal chairs is a better option for the weekends. We will communicate final plans in this regard early next week.
Also, due to the need to sanitize between each Mass, and to allow ample time for this, please do NOT arrive for Mass any earlier than ½ hour before Mass is to begin. The Rosary, Divine Mercy, Chaplet, and other prayers will not be prayed before or after Masses at this time. If any parishioners can volunteer to clean between Masses and/or donate sanitizing wipes/supplies, it would be greatly appreciated.
As per the Archdiocesan directives, those individuals older than 65 years old (the recommended CDC age), those with underlying heath conditions or caring for the sick in any way, may stay home. Same applies to those parishioners who have been ill, or have a temperature, etc. Please stay at home.
Having said all this, and as per yesterday’s letter, all the faithful of the Archdiocese of Detroit have a dispensation from the obligation to attend weekend Mass until September 6, 2020.
With the assistance from ushers, know that strict social distancing in the church and gym will be enforced for weekday and weekend Masses; the church will be marked with signs and tapes. As we comply with physical distancing, the Masses will be limited in attendance based on approximately 25% building capacity. St. Anne church & hall will accommodate around 120 people, and St. Charles Gym will accommodate around 100 people for each Mass respectively. In order to fit the most possible people with social distancing in place, please be seated to fill from front to back, so that ushers are able to see how much space is left for attendees. It will be first come first serve availability. We may have to introduce an additional Mass to accommodate all the parishioners on Saturdays at 6pm. We will let you know how and when it will happen.
The church layout of the pews will be different. We plan to use alternate pews and it will be designated by signs. The parishioners who come to attend Mass are to strictly follow the below guidelines;
1. A family who lives in the same household can take a same pew without social distancing.
2. Face covering or a mask is a must and should be worn by all the parishioners entering the church to protect other parishioners from the dangers of contracting the virus.
3. Maintaining 6 feet distance always, inside and outside the church.
At the end, based on my prayers in solitude these days, I am strongly convinced that to overcome this crisis of Covid-19 pandemic is to pray the Serenity Prayer every day. Ever since the pandemic started, I prayed this prayer every day. It has helped me immensely to deal with everything we have gone through in these last two months.
“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, and Wisdom to know the difference.” – Reinhold Niebhur
Fr. Hendrico Rebello SAC
April 20, 2020
Peace of Jesus Christ be with you all!
Happy Easter and Happy Divine Mercy Week!
As the whole world is engulfed in this deadly Covid-19 pandemic with difficulty and sadness, the Easter season provides the opportunity to access joy in the midst of pain, and confidence in the promise of Resurrection – that life and love triumph over death, forever. Psalm 30:5 reminds us that “weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.”
Likewise, after Jesus died, followers of Jesus who were “downcast”, were walking the road to Emmaus, and through encountering the resurrected Jesus, became “incredulous for joy and amazed.” (Luke 24:41)
In order to have the same joy of the Resurrection, we need to support one another. So, let us pray for each other: that in this time of shadows and gloom for so many, we may be lights reflecting Him, the light that shines in the darkness, and has not been, and never will be, overcome (cf. Jn 1: 5).
As this pandemic continues to bring much of our world to a standstill, we here at St. Charles and St. Anne find ourselves facing a difficult reality shared by many organizations in our society. We have suspended public Masses, in order to promote the health and well-being of our beloved parishioners. With this, as you know, comes a decrease in offertory resources. As good stewards of our church’s resources, we must respond in a responsible and foresighted way to our current situation. The need to be good stewards means we have made the difficult decision to temporarily lay off some of our staff members. Please know that this decision was not made lightly, but only after careful discernment and comprehensive analysis of the unfortunate financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
This being said, we are extremely grateful for all of those who are continuing to contribute to the parishes online or by mailing in your donations, and we ask that you please continue to do so to help your parish through this time!
Divine Mercy Week Drive-Through Confessions
I extend this opportunity for our parishioners to receive Plenary Indulgences during this Divine Mercy Week by coming for Drive-Through confession Wednesday April 22nd from 5:30 to 7pm at St. Charles parking lot. Fr. Kevin Roelant has willingly accepted my invitation to help me with the confessions. One of the conditions for receiving an indulgence is sacramental confession within about 20 days before or after the feast. So please avail yourselves of this opportunity to make a good confession and come closer to God during this difficult time. We will have St. Charles Ushers, led by Mr. Jeff Langton, to guide you on what you have to do when you drive through the church parking lot.
Guidelines for drive through confessions:
- While you are waiting in line, keep the windows of your vehicle rolled up and the radio on so as to give the others ahead of you proper privacy.
- Wear a mask.
- When confessing, only roll your window down a little bit – enough to communicate/hear, but so as to add another layer of protection.
Please don’t lose heart. Stay strong during these trying times. You have my prayerful support, as humble as that may be; and I rely on yours, for the strength for which I give Christ thanks. Let us face our challenges with the serene confidence, born of faith in Our Father.
Fr. Hendrico Rebello SAC
During this time, our parishes of St. Anne & St. Charles still need your support! Although we are not celebrating Mass as a parish community, we still have a need to pay our staff, maintain the church buildings, and, importantly, continue our outreach ministries. We ask that, to the best of your ability, you continue to make your weekly offertory donation either by mailing them to the parish, or (for St. Charles parishioners) donating online. You can easily set up online giving from our website at www.stcharlesnewport.com/give
Everything is subject to change; developments rapidly occur. We will attempt to keep everyone updated in a timely fashion. If you know other parishioners who did not get this email, please tell them to email the parish office asking to be added to our contact list, so that all can receive important updates from us. In the meantime, please check the St. Anne Facebook page (search St. Anne Parish) and the St. Charles Borromeo website for updates.