Dear St. Catherine Parish Family,
In response to Governor Kemp's recent shelter in place order, Bishop Konzen has asked all pastors to keep churches closed even for private visits for prayer through April 13th (or for the length of time that the order continues to remain in effect). Additionally, he has asked that Confessions, apart from cases of serious need, be suspended. Consequently, effective today, our church and office facilities will be closed to the public until the shelter in place order has been rescinded.
Additionally, we will not hold our regularly scheduled Confessions on Saturdays and Wednesdays. However, Fr. Valery and I will make ourselves available for Confessions by appointment, and we will meet with you outdoors. (Some have asked if it is possible to have Confession over the phone or video conference. Because of the incarnational reality of the sacraments, for a sacrament to be validly celebrated, the individual must be present in person, and not by phone or video.) Bishop Konzen also included a helpful resource on making an act of perfect contrition during those times when it is not possible to receive the sacrament of Confession. The document includes information on some additional indulgences granted by the Holy See as well.
It is particularly poignant, I believe, that we are enduring these tragic circumstances as we enter into Holy Week. I will be following up soon with our live stream schedule for Holy Week liturgies as well as other information and online resources for you all that will be helpful to enter into Holy Week more fruitfully. Please know of my continued prayers for you all. If you need to contact me or Fr. Valery for any reason, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.