A Pastoral Response to Corona Virus

Black Jesus Heals

Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

As our region, nation and world deal with the spread of the this wretched virus that is leading the sickness and death of many, our Parish continues to seek to be a community where God is glorified and His people are sanctified. We wanted to provide the following updates…

Regarding Weekday and Sunday Masses…. Archbishop Perez has “dispensed” all Catholics (as have the other Bishops in Pennsylvania) form the “obligation” to attend Mass on Saturday Evening or Sunday. This does not mean that Mass is being “cancelled”. We will still gather for Daily Mass at 8am (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday Mornings). However, effective immediately those Masses will be held in the Church to provide the opportunity to have appropriate space between people as recommended by the experts. If you would like to attend Daily Mass “virtually”, please link HERE and praise our Lord God from your own home. We will still have Mass on Saturday at 5pm and Sundays at 8am and 10am (as well as Religious Education Classes on Sunday Morning). We continue to clean the Church’s surfaces with bleach water a few times a week, will continue refraining from touching, we have removed the Holy Water fonts and the sharing of the cup remains suspended. If you choose not to join us live, please watch us on Live Stream at 10am. You may also choose to attend the 5pm or 8am Mass which are less crowded and have a seat with “social distancing”. Even if you choose not to attend Mass, the command to Keep Holy the Sabbath remains in effect and that includes a time to worship the Lord. You can even find the Bulletin on line (some folks can’t miss their Church Bulletin). If you are not feeling well, please stay home (and consult your physician or an Emergency Room).

Small Groups… remain scheduled as normal at this time. The Parish Staff have reviewed the “warnings” and since most are to stay away from larger crowds, we do not believe our Small Groups are a threat. Of course, we encourage those who are ill to please stay home until you feel better.

Material Assistance… We are aware that this pandemic will cause many to lose work and thus loose money. This will be a very serious challenge to many people. Aware of this, we welcome additional donations to our Social Ministry Account (checks payable to St. Raymond Social Ministry and placed in the collection as normal) and invite you to make requests from our Social Ministry fund is you in fact are losing income because of the impact of the virus. Some will also have needs associated with increased food or child care costs, please direct these requests to Deacon Bill Bradley through an email or a phone call to the Parish Office at 215-549-3760.

Food Needs… At the moment, our Food Cupboard is stocked. If you have a need for groceries, we want to help. Please contact Arleen Daniels through an email or a phone call to the Parish Office at 215-549-3760.

Spiritual Support… This pandemic can cause great fear and anxiety in many of our hearts. We want to support one another through this time of crisis. In addition to our regular prayer, we will offer a Call to Prayer at Noon each day using the same number we use for the 6:30am Call to Prayer. We will be doing this 7 Days a Week until this crisis passes. Please call 1-857-232-0158, CODE 336656. We will pray Psalm 91, have some intercessory prayer for those in need and beg God that His mighty power save us from this wretched virus. Remember the power of God and remind others of it as well! If you are ill, please call the Parish Office. If you are remaining home and wish to receive Holy Communion, please call the Parish Office and someone will make a short visit with the Blessed Sacrament. If you have other ideas about our spiritual response, please let Father Chris, Deacon Bill or Richara know your thoughts.

Trust in the Lord and beg the intercession of all the saints for our protection, the healing of the sick and the calming of fear.

img_0668

Lord God, grant mercy to those who have died.