Pastor’s Message on Church Reopening

In the post below, our Reopening Committee has provided an extensive section on returning to church. I’d like to add a few words as we welcome the faithful back to public Masses starting the week of June 29.

Bishop DiMarzio has given churches permission to open for Mass both on weekdays and on Sundays. Enough parishioners have volunteered to act as ushers that we will be able to have Mass this Wednesday (July 1) at 12:10 PM and next Sunday (July 5) at 11:15 AM. We barely have enough volunteers to maintain our current schedule, much less expand the number of Masses, we will need more helpers. If you can volunteer going forward, please contact the rectory, Joe Genova, or Jane Olson.

The 11:15 AM Mass will still be streamed live and be available on our website and YouTube channel for later viewing. We ask elderly people and anyone with a pre-existing condition to please avail yourself of this service. As a reminder, the bishop’s dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass remains in effect.

The pandemic revealed much to all of us in so many ways. It showed us at St. Charles many of our strengths. Without the assistance of our “technical staff,” Mike McGowan, “D.J.” Francis Chin, and Fr. John we could not have connected to so many of our parishioners. Having our own musicians every week was also extremely important. Yet let us not forget the many people who called other parishioners to check in on them, the committee that is still working to make the transition back to Church as smooth as possible and the many members who participated in parish prayers from the Rosary to Vespers and kept our groups from Religious Education to both book clubs functioning.

This is what collaborative ministry means and we will need to build on it. The pandemic hit when we were developing considerable momentum. We cannot turn the clock back even for a few months, but we can build on what we have learned and experienced. The most important collaboration is ultimately not between pastor and parishioners, as important as this is, but between all of us and Jesus. Let us accept His grace to build His Church.