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The Ascension of the Lord

The Seventh Sunday of Easter

May 24, 2020

 Dear St. Catharine of Siena Parishioners,

The feast of the Ascension is the next-to-the-last celebration of the Easter Season.  The readings for this great day have a slightly different focus each year.  Today’s texts remind us of the “uniqueness” of Jesus.  The letter to the Ephesians tells us that God raised him from the dead, and then sat him at his right hand in the heavens…    Being seated at God’s right is a great honor for Jesus, and a way of assuring us that we can always know where he is.  Staying close to him keeps us close to God.  It gives us a share in his honor as well as the assurance that we will be able to take our place with him in the kingdom of heaven.  This beautiful image of Jesus watching over us, interceding for us, taking care of us is especially appealing as we continue to live with the challenges of COVID-19.

This week we will have the opportunity to come together for the Public Celebration of Mass for the first time since March 22.  I have been eagerly awaiting this day.  In my imagination  I initially pictured a grand beginning with a lot of excitement.  But, instead of an unrestrained reunion, the need to be cautious and to take protective measures demand that we go slow and have a simple start.  So, here’s a list of what we are planning as St. Catharine Church opens with the rest of the archdiocesan parishes this week, for us, on Tuesday, May 26.

1)  Remember that you have been dispensed from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass.  That dispensation will remain in effect for the foreseeable future.  Those who have fragile health conditions should not come to church.  Those who are nervous or worried about possible contamination need not attend.

2)  For the next two weeks (beginning May 26) there will be four Mass times at St. Catharine of Siena Church:

Tuesday & Thursday at 10:00 AM; Saturday at 4:00 PM; Sunday at 10:00 AM.

This schedule was chosen because we need to clean and disinfect the church after each service.

3)  Each pew will be marked with blue tape (down the pew backside) for the seating of three adults.  Sit with you back against the tape to maintain a social distance of 6 feet on each side.  However, family members may sit closer together taking up the entire space between the blue tape if necessary.  Pews in front and behind will be roped off and must remain empty.  We strongly encourage wearing face masks.  Hymnals have been removed from the pews; familiar music will be used keeping responses to a minimum.

4)  Recognize others with a smile or nod of the head at the Sign of Peace instead of physical contact.  Keep a good distance from the person ahead of you in the Communion line.  Communion reception on the tongue is strongly discouraged.  Reception of Communion from the Chalice is suspended indefinitely.

I expect we will need to review and adjust these guidelines as necessary over the next two weeks.  Thank you, in advance, for your patience, cooperation and continuing generosity to the parish.  Thanks so much for caring for St. C’s!

Fr. Tony Dattilo

 

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THE ASCENSION OF THE LORD

“And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.”

                                                            The Seventh Sunday of Easter                                           A

Memorial Day Weekend

24 May 2020

 

CELEBRANT:  We offer prayers through Jesus who intercedes for us

at the right hand of God.

  1. Lord of Glory, turn the eyes of ordinary people to see Jesus, the eternal priest,

     who is raised up and intercedes for us…………………………………….We pray to the Lord:

  1. Lord of Life, assist your Church in finding better ways to draw more people

     into the circle of Christian love…………………………………………………We pray to the Lord:

  1. Lord of Goodness, help all who are troubled or filled with doubts recognize the

     wisdom You give in abundance………………………………………….……..….We pray to the Lord:

  1. Lord of Peace, inspire all nations with the vision of a new world order, free

     from violence, where peace and harmony reign supreme……..We pray to the Lord:

  1. Lord of the Poor, support all new Catholics on the journey of faith, and bless all

     who labor in mission fields around the World…………..…………….We pray to the Lord:

  1. Lord of Hope, enlighten all those who are discerning the path to marriage, the

     single life or a religious vocation…………………….…………………………We pray to the Lord:

  1. Lord of New Life, protect the members of the Armed Forces and all those in

     harm’s way;  keep near your side our deceased loved ones and all who have given    

     their lives for our nation……………………………………………………………..We pray to the Lord:

 

 

PRAYER:  God of glory, hear our petitions and prayers.

You have put all things into the hands of your Son Jesus,

and have made him pass from this world to you.

 Keep our faith unshaken,

 for he has promised to be with us all our days,

 and to receive us into the glory

where he lives and reigns for ever and ever.  Amen

 

The Sixth Sunday of Easter

May 17, 2020

 

Dear St. Catharine of Siena Parishioners,

There is a light at the end of the tunnel!  Last week we received a letter from the archdiocese informing all parishes that the public celebration of weekday Mass may begin on Monday, May 25, and weekend Masses on Saturday/Sunday May 30-31.  However, as Archbishop Schunrr wrote in his letter:

I must emphasize that this is not going to be “a return to normal.”   Health and safety requirements and recommendations must continue to be followed.  Among these are social distancing, the use of face masks, and concern for the most vulnerable…

Because of social distancing, church capacity will be significantly reduced and the number of people who attend a particular Mass will have to be regulated and limited.  Remember that all Catholics have been dispensed from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass, and that dispensation will remain in place for the foreseeable future.  Those who wish to participate in Mass and receive Holy Communion can do so by attending any Mass that is celebrated any day of the week…

Please be respectful of the guidelines established in each parish.  Those who are elderly or vulnerable should continue to stay at home, mindful of the dispensation from the Sunday obligation.  Parishes are asked to try to find ways to safely bring Holy Communion to shut-ins. People who are fearful that they may be putting their health, or the health of their family (or others) at risk should likewise continue to remain at home

With the Blessed Virgin Mary interceding on our behalf we will get through these challenging times and draw nearer to her Son, the Good Shepherd.

I eagerly look forward to Memorial Day, Monday May 25, our first public liturgy since all Masses were canceled back on March 22.  We are still refining our list of what can and cannot be done in church, and you will find the basic list of what must be done in the post below this letter.  Remember we are all going to have to live with many limitations for a long time, but I am sure we can manage them and grow stronger because of them.   

Thank you very much for your patience during this difficult time, and especially for continuing to send your Sunday envelopes and special donations to the parish since the COVID 19 lockdown began two months ago.  Your generosity has helped us to be able to keep paying all our employees as well as our bills and expenses.  Thanks so much for caring for St. C’s!

Fr. Tony Dattilo

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Guidelines for the Resumption of Public Worship

Weekday and Weekend Masses may begin May 25

If you are present in Church for a weekday, weekend Mass or Funeral Mass, Remember…

Catholics who reside in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and all other Catholics in the archdiocese continue to be dispensed from the obligation of attending Sunday Mass. Those who are at risk or fearful that they or their family might become sick are encouraged to stay home.

  1. The gifts of bread and wine must come from the servers’ table near the altar and NOT from an open public place.
  2. Maintain a respectful “social distance” of six feet from other people
  3. There should be no hand holding during the Our Father and no physical contact during the Sign of Peace.  Recognize others with a smile, a nod of the head, a wave of the hand…
  4. Reception of Communion on the tongue is strongly discouraged.
  5. Reception of Communion from the Chalice is suspended indefinitely.
  6. Holy Water fonts will be intentionally be left dry.
  7. Anyone who feels sick or has symptoms of any kind should NOT be present.
  8. Hymnals and other materials should be removed from the pews.  Disposable worship aids are OK.
  9. The faithful are encouraged to wear face masks; Communion ministers may wear a face mask; the priest celebrant is discouraged from wearing one.
  10. Consideration should be given to reducing the role of choirs and ensembles in light of social distancing regulations.
  11. Mass and homilies should not be unnecessarily long.
  12. The pastor can arrange for the baptism of infants, teens and adult converts at Mass or outside Mass; First Communion celebrations may take place in an appropriate way.
  13. Seating in church may be regulated by color coding of pews and alternation for different Masses.
  14. Greet people before/after Mass only by maintaining social distancing.

 

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I PRAY WE DON’T GO BACK TO NORMAL

I pray that the next time a friend grabs me and pulls me in for a hug,

I actually take the time to appreciate

the gift of their embrace.

 I pray that when school resumes and people are dropping kids off,

they take the time to thank the staff for the amazing gift

that they give to our community.

I pray that the next time I’m sitting in a crowded restaurant

I take the time to look around at the smiling faces, loud voices

and thank God for the gift of community.

I pray that the next time I’m standing in church

listening to the voices of praise and worship

that I take a moment to thank God

for the gift of congregation.

I pray that the next time I see a person or situation that needs prayer,

I hope I pray as passionately and fervently

as I have these past few weeks.

I pray that when I am at the grocery store that I take a moment to thank God

that He provides us with the necessities of life and the amazing people

who work so hard to keep us supplied.

I pray that I never again take for granted the ability to hop in the car

and visit a friend, go to the mall, go to a gathering…

So, truth is, I don’t want things to return to the way they once were.

I pray that we take the lessons and challenges of the past few weeks

and create a new normal.  

My goal is to truly appreciate the daily abundance of blessings

that were so easily overlooked just a mere few weeks ago.

 

 

 

Our Lady of Guadalupe

 

 

Holy Virgin of Guadalupe, Queen of the Angels and Mother of the Americas.
We fly to you today as your beloved children.
We ask you to intercede for us with your Son, as you did at the wedding in Cana.

Pray for us, loving Mother,
and gain for our nation and world,
and for all our families and loved ones,
the protection of your holy angels,
that we may be spared the worst of this illness.

For those already afflicted,
we ask you to obtain the grace of healing and deliverance.
Hear the cries of those who are vulnerable and fearful,
wipe away their tears and help them to trust.

In this time of trial and testing,
teach all of us in the Church to love one another and to be patient and kind.
Help us to bring the peace of Jesus to our land and to our hearts.

We come to you with confidence,
knowing that you truly are our compassionate mother,
health of the sick and cause of our joy.

Shelter us under the mantle of your protection,
keep us in the embrace of your arms,
help us always to know the love of your Son, Jesus. Amen.

 

Prayer for a Pandemic

May we who are merely inconvenienced

Remember those whose lives are at stake.

May we who have no risk factors

Remember those most vulnerable.

May we who have the luxury of working from home

Remember those who must choose between preserving their health or making their rent.

May we who have the flexibility to care for our children when their schools close

Remember those who have no options.

May we who have to cancel our trips

Remember those that have no place to go.

May we who are losing our margin money in the tumult of the economic market

Remember those who have no margin at all.

May we who settle in for a quarantine at home

Remember those who have no home.

During this time when we cannot physically wrap our arms around each other,

Let us yet find ways to be the loving embrace of God to our neighbors.

Amen.

 

UPDATES AS OF FRIDAY, 5.21.2020:  Beginning May 26th there will be four Mass times at St. Catharine Church:  Tuesday & Thursday at 10:00 AM; Saturday at 4:00 PM; Sunday at 10:00 AM.  There will be NO Memorial Day Mass on Monday, May 25th.  This schedule will continue for 2 weeks and may be subject to change. 

UPDATES AS OF FRIDAY, 5.8.2020:  We are hoping to resume our Mass schedule beginning the weekend of May 30 & May 31 for Pentecost.  This is a tentative plan and we will keep you informed as information becomes available and the timeline becomes more clear.  We look forward to being together again soon.

UPDATES AS OF WEDNESDAY, 4.1.2020:

Please check the bulletin for Sunday April 5, 2020 for a recent letter from Father Dattilo containing important updated information.  The link to bulletins is on the homepage. 

Please visit CATHOLICCINCINNATI.ORG and click on the “Live Streaming” link to access information about the live-streaming Holy Week and Easter Liturgies schedule. 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION 3.24.2020

PLEASE DO NOT LEAVE DONATIONS FOR THE BETHANY HOUSE CHARITY AT THE RECTORY UNLESS THERE IS SOMEONE THERE TO ACCEPT THEM.  DO NOT LEAVE ITEMS AT THE SCHOOL OR OUTSIDE, HOLD ONTO THEM UNTIL A LATER DATE FOR DROP OFF IS DETERMINED.   THIS IS DIFFERENT INFORMATION THAN WAS PREVIOUSLY PROVIDED AND WE APOLOGIZE FOR THE INCONVENIENCE.  HOWEVER, OUR OFFICE HOURS ARE MUCH REDUCED AND LIKELY TO CHANGE ON A DAILY BASIS.   THANK YOU FOR YOUR COOPERATION.

UPDATES AS OF  MONDAY, 3.23.2020:

BASED UPON THE DIRECTIVE ISSUED BY THE GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF OHIO ON MARCH 22, 2020 THE RECTORY OFFICES WILL MAINTAIN SIGNIFICANTLY REDUCED OFFICE HOURS.  SHOULD YOU NEED TO VISIT THE RECTORY FOR ANY REASON PLEASE CALL  AHEAD  FIRST 661 – 0651 TO MAKE SURE SOMEONE IS AVAILABLE.

PLEASE VISIT THE ARCHDIOCESE WEBSITE AT CATHOLICCINCINNATI.ORG AND CHOOSE THE COVID19-RESPONSE LINK FOR INFORMATION ON TELEVISED AND STREAMING MASSES AND RESOURCES FOR PARISHIONERS WORSHIPING AT HOME.

 

 

 

WORSHIP AND SACRAMENTS IN THE TIME OF PUBLIC HEALTH CONCERN

  1. Effective immediately, the bishops of Ohio have suspended, temporarily, all publicly celebrated Masses/liturgies, at least through Holy Week and Easter (April 12). Priests may celebrate in a private place/chapel without members of the faithful.  Mass “For the Sick” is recommended.
  2. Baptisms are possible based on urgency; Weddings and Funerals may also take place.  Attendance should be limited to fewer than 50 people.  Couples should reschedule weddings if possible.  Contact the rectory for additional information.
  3. Priests will be available for Anointing of the Sick and for Holy Communion to the Sick and Homebound. All recommended protective measures will be followed.  Priests will also be willing to hear Confessions.  Call the rectory to schedule an appointment.

 

PUBLIC MASSES AND LITURGIES HAVE BEEN CANCELED, BUT…

If you are present in Church, e.g. for a small group Funeral Mass, Remember…

  1. The gifts of bread and wine must come from the servers’ table near the altar and NOT from an open public place.
  2. Maintain a respectful “social distance” of six feet from other people
  3. There should be no physical contact during the Sign of Peace. Recognize others with a smile, a nod of the head, a wave of the hand…
  4. Reception of Communion must take place in the hand, NOT ON THE TONGUE.
  5. Reception of Communion from the Chalice is suspended indefinitely.
  6. Holy Water fonts will be intentionally be left dry.
  7. Anyone who feels sick or has symptoms of any kind should NOT be present.
  8. Non-sacramental parish events need to be canceled.