Welcome back to everyone who has been away from Church! For the last year, the Bishops of New Jersey have dispensed the obligation of Catholics to attend Mass on Sunday and Holy Days of Obligation in order to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. They also implemented directives for those who attended Mass in order to keep them safe. This included the obligation to wear masks, making sure that the pews are disinfected after every Mass, doing away with the sign of peace and other measures. Over the last two weeks almost all of that has come to an end because much of the population is vaccinated and therefore there is less fear for people to contract the virus.
The loosening of restrictions also applies to functions outside of Mass attendance. Specifically, we can return to our normal devotions and other meetings as we have in the past. I am still figuring out exactly what I should bring back or what we need to do again. So, in the fall, I will be bringing back Bible Study, Reading Group and Game Night. Also, there are other groups that may start. Since we are now renting to the Charter School, some of the locations of these would need to change since we no longer have a conference room in the school building. We will figure this all out, though.
In the meantime, Church is open. So, please let your Catholic friends know that they ought to come back if they are able. I am sure many of them are not reading this bulletin. So, it is up to you to inform your neighbor.
Lastly, this weekend marks ten years of my priestly ordination. I am always grateful for all the opportunities that the priesthood gives me, and I could not imagine any other life for myself. Please keep me in prayer as well as all my brother priests who serve in the Church.
P.S. You may have noticed that we have recently painted the sanctuary. This is part of a project that we will be working on this summer to improve the worship area of the Church. If you like what we’re doing, then feel free to make a donation in the second basket we will be putting out. In the next bulletin letter, I will explain what my plans are for the near future.