For years, especially since Synod 16, the Archbishop and the Archdiocese have been praying for a “new Pentecost,” a new outpouring of God’s spirit, giving us courage, boldness, joy, and all the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Today we celebrate the first Pentecost, and that gives new impetus to our prayer. We did not expect to find ourselves in this particular situation of dealing with a pandemic, but perhaps we need God’s spirit more than ever, to lead us and guide us through these times.
We are happy to welcome you back to Church this weekend. I trust you are aware of all the things we need to do to keep one another safe, and I thank you for your cooperation. As you know, we need to wear masks and observe social distancing, so we will be sitting in every other pew. There are areas marked for families, couples and people attending alone. Our singing will be streamlined, since robust singing sends more droplets into the air than talking. We are limited to 25% of the seating capacity of the church; for us that is 75 people. On weekends we can overflow into the hall and take 50 more, for a total of 125 people at each mass. That is the reason we have asked people to call or email so that we can gauge attendance at each mass. We have adjusted the mass schedule because we are anticipating fewer people and we need time to clean the church after each mass. We will be observing attendance closely in the coming weeks. You will not be able to be seated anywhere you like, and we ask you to follow the guidance of the ushers. It will likely be a bit messy in the beginning, but I think we will learn and be able to adjust quite quickly.
When you come to church, you will see that we have begun repaving part of our parking lot. For about a month, parking is limited to the “school” lot (in front of Crescent Academy near the side entrances to the hall) and the large parking lot across the street from the main entrance to church off of Code Road. All the other lots will be under construction. (Next summer we will reverse the process, and do what was not done this summer.) You will need to enter through the side hall doors or the main entrance of church. Again, we thank you for your cooperation. One more disruption to deal with!
Thank you for your cooperation with everything, and your continued support of the parish! God’s spirit will lead us through these days!