Today, I reach out to you from an uncharacteristically quiet Saint Anne Campus. I am stilling adjusting to this new reality.
In these days ahead, as we settle into a new rhythm, it is vitally important that we maintain our connectedness. Together, we will get through this virus outbreak. We are a strong, hopeful and caring community.
One of the saddest side effects of this pandemic is the canceling of all of our Holy Week services, including Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter and its Vigil. These services will be available to you through our parish eblasts or on our parish website: stannebarrington.org as we celebrate them in the church without the benefit of a live congregation.
I know that this is a time many of us may feel isolated from our families, neighbors, friends and fellow parishioners. One of the things that we can do is to hold each other in prayer. I especially ask you to pray extra hard during these days. We pray for our families, students and older adults. At this time, I ask you to also lift up in prayer the residents and patients in the local retirement, skilled nursing and hospital facilities.
I have attached our Ministry of Praise booklet of prayers that may bring you some consolation at this time.
Given that our parish church is closed and the stay at home order is in effect, in keeping with a longstanding pastoral practice when a penitent’s access to the Sacrament of Reconciliation is restricted, they can be assured that their sins are forgiven if they make an act of contrition with a firm resolve to approach the Sacrament of Reconciliation after the stay at home order is lifted.
Please know that I am keeping you in my prayers each day. It is our shared hope that one day in the future we will look back on these days as at time that we were tested and grew stronger in our faith and hope in God.
Sincerely in Christ,
Father Bernie Pietrzak, Pastor