In the Gospel we see that Jesus healed sick people by touching them. He touched people in various ways: with his words, with his hands, with his love. The Eucharist brings us very close to Jesus. And we too need his healing touch in our lives.
The Church is the people of God
UPDATED PARISH DIRECTIVES
AS A RESULT OF CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)
AS OF 1 MARCH 2021
Catholic churches and chapels in the Diocese of Wollongong will be able to open for Masses, Weddings, Funerals and Baptisms, subject to the following directives.
These directives have been revised as result of the release of the The Public Health (COVID-19 Restrictions on Gathering and Movement) Order (No 7) 2020 under the NSW Public Health Act 2010 and issued by the NSW Minister for Health and Medical Research.
All faithful in the diocese are dispensed from the obligation to physically attend Mass on Sundays
- The faithful can continue to keep holy their Sunday by setting aside time for prayer at home, reading the Scriptures of the day, watching Mass on television or online, and asking God for the graces they would normally receive in Holy Communion (canon 87 §1, canon 1248 §2)
- Churches and chapels can be opened to worshippers and the public for the following reasons: Masses, weddings, funerals, baptisms,reconciliation and private prayer such as adoration. (Whenever a church is open attendance monitors must be present and registration and hygiene practices implemented in accordance with these directives)
- The decision to open a parish church/chapel for these services is the responsibility of the parish priest with his parish council / leadership team
- The number of people inside a building must never exceed the limits detailed in the latest Public Health Order (see the following pages for specific numbers)
- All worshippers and attendees must register in advance through their parish office or online (if offered by your parish). Your Parish Priest is best placed to determine the process for admission and monitoring at each Mass
- When recording details of attendance, there should be no reference to why the person is attending (unless the person has registered online where their preference for the relevant sacrament is recorded) except for essential assistants where their role in the Mass must be recorded.
- People who feel unwell, who have flu/ respiratory symptoms, elevated body temperatures or who have been in contact in the previous 14 days with people suspected to have or who have been diagnosed with COVID-19, are not to enter churches or chapels
- Worshippers classified as vulnerable per AHPPC guidelines are encouraged not to attend physically
- Clergy and parish staff will follow a consistently applied process to ensure a fair and equitable attendance of worshippers
- All Holy Water fonts and stoups will remain empty
- Shared paper and pens should be removed from tables in the church
- Visible signage will be in place in all church buildings outlining, as a minimum, conditions of entry and the maximum capacity within the building
- High touch surfaces will be cleaned and disinfected regularly (including door handles pews, lectern, computer, vessels, shared musical instruments, taps, toilets, handrails) per Work Safe Australia guidelines
- Sufficient quantities of hygiene products (soap, hand sanitiser, tissues, antibacterial wipes) will be available and accessible to parish staff, worshippers and attendees at doors of churches and confessionals, back of the church, bathrooms, and in the sacristy and sanctuary
- Parishes may utilise a digital thermometer for use by the Attendance Monitor
- Clergy, worshippers and other participants will adhere to physical distancing requirements, including maintaining 1.5m distance where possible and ensuring two square metres per person in a room. (This may change from time to time through the designation of “hotspots” by Health Authorities that may affect only one or several parishes)
- An Attendance Monitor(s) will be present whenever a church or chapel is opened to the public. The key role of the monitors is to (1) ensure the attendee limit is not exceeded, (2) watch for symptoms in attendees, (3) inform people who are displaying symptoms or attempt to gain unlawful entry that they must leave the premises, and (4) record any incidents that occur while a church building is open.
- Essential assistants who are classified as vulnerable per AHPPC guidelines must provide medical clearance documentation (signed by a doctor) before serving
- Essential assistants may include sacristans, servers, readers, musicians, A/V operators, videographers and monitors depending on the type of celebration (see the relevant celebration below for details)
- Parishioners are asked not to congregate outside the Church/Chapel Building after each celebration
- The faithful are encouraged to have the ‘COVIDsafe’ app active on their mobile device where they have the capacity to do so (note: this is not a requirement of attendance)
- Parishes must submit a completed COVID-19 Safety Plan issued by the NSW Government to the Office of the Bishop:
- For the parish including masses
- For funerals
- For weddings
- Outdoor masses and liturgies
– Other one off celebrations not covered above
- Parishes must register each Church/Chapel in a Parish as COVID safe
- Each parish will determine whether congregational singing is allowed based upon current Public Health Orders in effect.
- A small number of musicians and singers are allowed in accordance with NSW Health Guidelines and is dependent on the Churches capacity to allow extra physical distancing for singers.
- Keep a record of name and a mobile number or email address for all worshippers, staff, volunteers, visitors and contractors for a period of at least 28 days after their attendance at the parish for any event or reason. Ensure records are used only for the purposes of tracing COVID-19
- The wearing of face masks by the faithful in all celebrations is strongly encouraged in accordance with requests from the NSW Government to help stop the spread of COVID-19
All overarching directives as detailed on page 1-2 are to be observed during the conduct of public Masses.
- the total number of persons allowed is calculated by allowing 2 square metres of space for each person (unless varied by Health Authorities through the designation of a Parish as being in a hotspot)
Note: the space to be measured when calculating the 2m2 per person excludes the sanctuary
In addition, the following specific directives apply where the Parish Priest has opted to celebrate public Mass:
- Only the maximum registered worshippers as calculated above will be allowed entry (excluding clergy and servers who will
be on the Sanctuary and Attendance Monitors where they are not seated in the congregational space). At the time of registration the full names and contact phone numbers for all worshippers will be collected.
- Parish-appointed Attendance Monitors will check names against a list to ensure all worshippers attending have registered
- Worshippers must sanitise their hands upon entry using provided sanitiser at doors of the building
- 5 metres between non family groups should be maintained and pews marked accordingly where possible
- Worshippers can seek assistance from the Attendance Monitors if required during the Mass
- Worshippers must not shake hands and instead offer a verbal exchange of peace
- The Attendance Monitors will maintain alertness to identify worshippers presenting with flu-like symptoms (cough, runny nose, etc.) and advise any worshippers with symptoms they must leave the premises
- The Attendance Monitors will ensure worshippers do not congregate in the entrance or any area of the building
- The Attendance Monitors will ensure appropriate distancing of worshippers as they enter the building and walk to their seats
- Communion will be received in the hand only (not on the tongue)
- There will be no communion from the chalice for worshippers
- The Attendance Monitors will coordinate appropriate distancing of worshipers as they exit the building.
Roles for Sacramental Program 2021
The Sacraments are a wonderful gift to us from God that invites us into deeper intimacy with Him. So that children can gain the full benefit of the experience, preparation is vital. This year we have a large number of candidates enrolled for the 1st Reconciliation & 1st Holy Communion Sacramental Program and because of that we need extra help to give each child the guidance they deserve.
If you are interested in helping, please take the time to explore the Roles for Sacramental Program which outlines what support roles we hope to fill with our 2021 Sacramental Program.
If you would like to assist us, please contact the Parish Office or Alan Raisbeck by the weekend of July 25-26.
PARISH MASS TIMES
* No Public masses until Further Notice
Online Masses on Facebook Page
Monday – Friday : 9:00 AM
Saturday: 8:30 AM, 6:00 PM (Vigil)
Sunday: 8:00 AM
Readings: 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time
First Reading : Wis 1:13-15; 2:23-24
Responsorial Psalm : Ps 29
Second Reading : 2 Cor 8:7,9,13-15
Gospel : Mark 5:21-43
For any physical questions and appointments, visit us at 58 Edgar St, Macquarie Fields NSW 2564.
Tuesday: 9 AM – 2 PM
Thursday: 9 AM – 2 PM
Friday: 9 AM – 2 PM
Sat – Sun: CLOSED