Most precautions to be lifted June 5/6 at St. Mark
Late yesterday we received the guidelines from Bp. Malesic for what post-pandemic procedures the parishes are expected to follow. The weekend of June 5/6 most things at St. Mark will return to normal, and I appreciate your patience in the meantime for this weekend and next while things continue as they have been. You are welcome to read the full memo, but the following are the notable precautions that will remain after June 5/6:
Those who are not fully vaccinated are strongly encouraged to continue wearing a mask.
The Precious Blood will not be distributed to the faithful. Additionally, receiving communion on the tongue is strongly discouraged.
The Sign of Peace should be done without physical contact when shared with someone outside your household.
Sanitizing frequently used surfaces will happen weekly instead of after each Mass.
Seating in the Social Hall will remain available with spaced seating for the immediate future.
Otherwise most things will be as they were prior to the pandemic. The wooden doors will be entrances again, seating in the church will be fully opened, holy water will return to the doors, the communion procession will return to the main aisle, kneelers and hymnals will return, and so on.
I look forward to having altar servers again but it may take a few months to have a full roster. We did not have enough servers prior to the pandemic, and now many of the older ones have moved onto college and the younger ones will need to have a refresher training.
My profound thanks to those who have worked so hard during the pandemic to make Masses as safe as possible, especially the volunteers who have been sanitizing after Masses, the sacristans, and the liturgical ministers. Your dedication and flexibility have been wonderful during a very challenging time for the parish.