Dear St. Charles Parish Family and Friends,
“These are the times that try men’s souls.” Thomas Paine wrote that in 1776 but is apropos of the health crisis we are living through today. These are trying times, and if we are willing to be honest, many of us may be a bit afraid because there are so many unknowns with the coronavirus.
But rather than panic, let us pray on our own and together virtually. The Parish Pastoral Council (PPC), together with Fr. Bill, Msgr. Al, and Fr. John, wants our parish family to know that St. Charles is here for you and remains committed to providing you with spiritual support. While the church is no longer permitted to be open for Eucharistic Adoration and private prayer, Mass will be live-streamed again this Sunday at 11:15 AM and will also be available on our website for later viewing [Zoom meeting details removed from website for security reasons]. Masses from St. James and the Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph are available on Net TV. The parish office is closed, but Fr. Bill is available when needed by phone.
The PPC is also exploring additional online spiritual programs that will provide parishioners with greater opportunity for personal engagement. For Holy Week, we will have a morning prayer group that you connect to online or dial-in to say the Liturgy of the Hours together. If there are spiritual or other programs that we are not offering but that you feel we should consider, please email the rectory at [email protected].
If anyone is unable to, or for health reasons should not, shop for groceries or go to the pharmacy please call the rectory (718-625-1177). We have a list of parish volunteers that are willing to shop and the groceries or pharmacy purchases will be left at your door.
Finally, the cost of maintaining the church continues and because of the cleaning required, costs are likely to increase. So we prayerfully ask that you continue to support St. Charles financially. Please consider enrolling in the parish online giving program (see instructions below) as this helps us to improve our budgeting and spending. Please mail or drop off your donation envelopes at the rectory if you do not donate online.
All parishioners are in our prayers, as are all those healthcare professionals working on the frontlines of this emergency, those that have fallen ill, those that have died, and the entire country and world. You will find Fr. Bill’s comments on the coronavirus crisis in his commentary on the first reading below.
Please continue to practice social distancing, wash your hands frequently, and avoid gatherings.
Together, and through our faith in Jesus Christ our Lord, we will get through these trying times.
Your brothers and sisters in Christ,
Donna Whiteford on behalf of the Parish Pastoral Council