With the recent news from the CDC and public health departments regarding masks, I want to provide an update on our own parish operations. In consultation with our Parish Council, other Catholic parishes in our area, and our Reopening Team, we have decided to maintain our mask requirement for all liturgical celebrations until we reach Phase 5, which is anticipated in the next several weeks.
We came to this decision for the following reasons:
- Given that less than 40% of adults in the State are fully vaccinated, the majority of our adult Mass attendees and visitors remain susceptible to infection and will still need to wear a mask at Mass;
- The vast majority of children under age 18 are not yet vaccinated;
- We feel that to make a change in mask use, we would need to verify vaccination status of all attendees and we simply do not have the capacity for this adaptation right now.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have operated with the health and safety of everyone in our community as the foremost priority. Collectively, we have lifted one another up in prayer, adhered to protocols and guidelines, and committed to a unified approach to overcoming the challenges of the pandemic. It is with that spirit of unity that we continue moving forward.
I understand that not all will be pleased with this decision; however, we feel it is the best decision for our Parish Community. As always, I thank you for your patience as our staff and volunteers work hard to make the liturgical celebrations of our parish beautiful and safe as we continue to support the wellbeing of all of our parishioners.
Sincerely Yours in Christ,
Rev. Bernard J. Pietrzak