A letter from the President and Vice-President on behalf of all the Bishops of the Bishops Conference of England and Wales
A Summary of Key Points :
- No gathering for public acts of worship from Friday evening, 20th March.
- Our churches remain open. Observe rules of hygiene and social distancing.
- The celebration of all Sunday and daily Masses will take place without a public congregation.
- Watch Mass at home on the internet or TV. Follow the prayers.
- Make an act of Spiritual Communion.
- The obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days is removed.
- Be attentive to the needs of the vulnerable. Help includes: contributing to food banks; volunteering for charitable initiatives; keeping in touch.
- The rhythm of prayer will continue.
At St Anne Line:
- I will say the public Masses allocated for Thursday and Friday of this week in accordance with the instructions above.
- I will continue to say a private daily Mass in church after that. Why? Because as St Pio of Pietrelcina said: ”It would be easier for the world to survive without the sun than to do without Holy Mass.”
- This article sums up many good points on this subject.
- Each Mass will be for the intentions already allocated and any you request in the future. Please keep them coming in. They will be listed day-by-day on the newsletter without timings.
- There are video-streamed Masses in the diocese at Leigh on Sea. There are many other churches which do this throughout the world. For the Extraordinary Form, try the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter where you will find a choice of beautiful Masses from around the world. We have a copy of the act of Spiritual Communion here.
- I am bound to say the prayer of the Church and I prefer to say it in church.
- Confession will continue to be available: best to check first.
- The Anointing of the sick and Holy Communion for the sick will continue, with extra precautions.
- The self-isolating will not be able to Receive these Sacraments at this time.
- We are compiling a list of those who may need support. Please look out for parishioners when “social distancing” might lead to loneliness.
- Taking inspiration from the “self-isolating postcards”, we need volunteers to pop our version of these through 1000 letterboxes with an Easter message.
- As parishioners call with, or send in, their needs, we will need volunteers who will help.
- We will need a coordinator or two to help handle these activities.
- Please contact the office if you’d like to help with any of these tasks.
- Catechetical and study activities will cease from today. We will just have to see when we can pick them up again. Don’t forget your spiritual needs!
- Marriage Preparation will continue. Contact the office.
- If you can think of any way we can help those whose children will not be at school from next week, please forward your suggestions!