Public Mass Is Back!
We are excited that public Masses have resumed at OLL! As we return to public liturgies, we pray that our community will draw together to worship the Lord and to protect every member of our parish, especially the most vulnerable. To that end, we are taking a number of precautions based on guidelines from the Diocese of Grand Rapids to ensure the health and safety of everyone who attends Mass. Please read the following guidelines, read our bishop’s letter, and watch this video about new Mass procedures. We ask for your patience and cooperation as we all adjust to these circumstances.
Mass Attendance Guidelines:
- Attendance will be limited to 25% of seating capacity, and social distancing will be practiced. Individuals who are not part of the same household will need to sit at least six feet apart. An usher will help you find seats, so please arrive early. Social distancing will also apply in other parts of the building.
- Masks will be required. Bring your own face covering. This applies to everyone over the age of two. We understand that this may be difficult with children; please do your best.
- Mass will look different. Holy water fonts will remain empty. There will be no physical greetings. Distribution of the Precious Blood will remain suspended. Worship aides for Saturday and Sunday Masses will be available as you walk in, and after Mass you must dispose of them in the recycling bins or take them with you. You may drop your offering in a collection podium in the narthex before or after Mass, or you can give via the website, text message, or mail.
- Extra sanitization will be in place. Staff will wipe down frequently touched surfaces between Masses. Parishioners are encouraged to bring their own hand sanitizer, especially for use before Holy Communion.
- Consider attending weekday Masses instead of Sunday Masses. This is a good option if you are concerned about crowds on Saturday and Sunday. We have returned to our usual schedule of weekday Masses, with the addition of a 6:30 p.m. Mass on Wednesdays. Weekday Masses will take place in the sanctuary, and only the main doors will be open.
While we hope to see you back at Mass soon, we understand if you need to stay home for health reasons. Accordingly, our bishop has dispensed all Catholics in the diocese from their obligation to attend Sunday Mass through September 7. We must continue to honor the Lord’s Day, but this can be done in other ways, including watching the Mass from the Cathedral of St. Andrew in Grand Rapids.
If you have questions or concerns, please call the parish office at 616-399-1062. Thank you for your patience and cooperation! We hope to see you back at Mass soon!
Rev. Michael F. Cilibraise