A PARISH RESPONSE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
UPDATE: As of Wednesday, March 18, 2020, Mass is suspended.
"For you are our God, You are our true joy, defend us oh Lord ..."
Tuesday, March 17, 2020
Dear People of God,
Effective on Wednesday, March 18, 2020, all public Masses as well as other public liturgies and activities at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Angola and at St. Paul’s Catholic Chapel at Clear Lake are suspended. This suspension is in effect until further notice. At the same time, Bishop Rhoades renews his standing dispensation for all Catholics of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend from any obligation to attend Mass for as long as this suspension might last.
These measures are announced in obedience to a decision by Bishop Kevin Rhoades and the other Catholic bishops in Indiana. The bishops took this difficult decision to suspend public Masses for the protection of the people in the face of an escalating coronavirus pandemic. As bishop Rhoades put it, “As Catholics, we must do our part.”
Not being able to attend Mass is a serious difficulty both spiritually and emotionally, since the Eucharist and the Sunday assembly are rightfully “the source and summit” of Catholic faith. We are reminded of the words given to us by the prophet Daniel in today’s Mass reading: “We have been reduced, oh Lord. We have in our day no place to gather to worship you and offer sacrifice … But with contrite heart and humble spirit let us be received. This is the sacrifice you want. So let our sacrifice be in your presence today as we follow you unreservedly. And now we follow you with our whole heart.” (Daniel 3:37-41)
Fr. Bob and the other Franciscans promise that Mass will be celebrated quietly – although we cannot allow that parishioners attend, the friars will offer up a Mass every day during the time of the containment measures. Bishop Rhoades also wants to assure the people that weddings, baptisms and funerals will continue to be celebrated, even though we must limit the number of people. The regular confession time is cancelled, but Fr. Bob and the other friars will be available to schedule a confession (the idea is to avoid having people congregate). The church will be open most every day from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. for private prayer.
I encourage you to read the full statements from Fr. Bob, from Bishop Rhoades and from the diocesan worship office. Bishop Rhoades, especially, gives some good guidelines for how to make a spiritual communion.
May the Lord accept our heartfelt sacrifice as we offer up these experiences as a prayer of intercession for all those affected by the disease.
Fr. Bob Showers OFM Conv., pastor
All Catholics of the diocese are dispensed from the obligation to attend Mass
A partir del miércoles 18 de marzo de 2020, se suspenden todas las Misas públicas, así como otras liturgias y actividades públicas en la Iglesia Católica San Antonio de Padua en Angola. Esta suspensión está vigente hasta nuevo aviso. Al mismo tiempo, el obispo Rhoades renueva su dispensa para todos los católicos de la diócesis de la obligación de asistir a misa durante el tiempo que esta suspensión pueda durar.
Los franciscanos prometen que la misa se celebrará en silencio, aunque no podemos permitir que los feligreses asistan, los frailes ofrecerán una misa todos los días durante el tiempo de las medidas de contención. El obispo Rhoades también quiere asegurar a la gente que las bodas, bautizos y funerales continuarán celebrándose, a pesar de que debemos limitar el número de personas. El tiempo de confesión regular se cancela, pero el p. Bob y los otros frailes estarán disponibles para programar una confesión. La iglesia estará abierta casi todos los días de 9:00 a.m. a 9:00 p.m. para la oración privada.
Que el Señor acepte nuestro sincero sacrificio al ofrecer estas experiencias como una oración de intercesión por todos los afectados por la enfermedad.
padre Roberto, pastor
Pope Francis' Prayer to Mary during this Coronavirus Pandemic
you always shine on our path as a sign of salvation and of hope.
We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick,
who at the cross took part in Jesus' pain, keeping your faith firm.
You know what we need, and we are sure you will provide
so that, just as in Cana of Galilee, we may return to joy and to feasting
after this time of trial.
Help us, Mother of Divine Love,
to conform to the will of the Father and to do as we are told by Jesus,
who has taken upon himself our sufferings and carried our sorrows
to lead us, through the cross, to the joy of the resurrection.
Under your protection, we seek refuge, Holy Mother of God. Do not disdain the entreaties of us who are in trial, but deliver us from every danger, O glorious and blessed Virgin.