Reopening the church

BURLINGTON CATHOLIC COLLABORATIVE                                 
PRELIMINARY RE-OPENING PLAN

As we welcome parishioners back to churches, it is important to keep in mind that Covid-19 is still a great threat to public health.  Distancing, hand washing and masks should continue to be regular practices by all.

The Archdiocese of Boston has provided guidelines as we slowly re-open our churches.  We ask that everyone follow these guidelines strictly and be patient as we begin to move forward.

1.  Cardinal O’Malley has dispensed everyone of our Sunday obligation indefinitely. With this in mind, all people who are 65 and older or who have existing health concerns are asked to stay home and not attend Mass in person until further notice. Please continue to attend Mass on television, the internet, our Facebook page “Burlington Catholic Collaborative, and our Website: www.burlingtoncatholicma.org. People who are not able to wear a mask for health reasons should probably stay home.

2.  We will resume Sunday Masses beginning on the weekend of May 30/31. There will be no hospitality until further notice. Churches will open 15 minutes before the scheduled time for Mass. Parishioners are asked to bring their own hand sanitizer to Mass and use it before entering the pew and Immediately Before Receiving Holy Communion.

3.  Attendees at both churches will be severely limited due to the need to maintain distancing.  Families and those who live together may occupy one bench or row.  Single individuals will be distanced from each other by 6 feet.  We will only be using every third row. When the churches are “full” based on these seating restrictions, parishioners will be asked to attend another Mass.

4.  Both churches will utilize one entry way (Front Door Parking lot side at St. Malachy and Front Middle Door at St. Margaret).   Parishioners will be asked to seat themselves, beginning from the front of the church to the back, observing the instructions of the ushers who will be at both entrances.  The “cry rooms” at both churches will NOT be used, nor will the front foyer at St. Margaret.

5.  Missallettes have been removed and there will be no congregational singing nor will choirs be allowed until further notice.  There will be one lector and one Eucharistic Minister.   Mass will not begin with a procession nor will there be an offertory procession.  Baskets will be placed at the front of the church isles for the offertory collection as you come for Communion. We encourage on-line giving and mail ins.

6.  All parishioners over the age of  5 are asked to wear a mask during Mass.   At Communion time, parishioners are asked to come to communion by the SIDE aisle and return by the CENTER aisle, observing the 6 feet distance markers on the floor.  Everyone should leave their seat or bench, even if you do not plan to receive Communion, in order to avoid people having to step over one another.  Please fully extend your arm with hands cupped as the priest/Eucharistic Minister drops the host into your hand.   Please step to the side, where the floor is marked, lift up the bottom of your mask and place the host in your mouth before returning to your seat maintaining 6 feet distance from each other.

7.   At the end of Mass, please leave the church immediately by all doors but do so, row by row, maintaining the 6-foot distance requirement. Bulletins will be available for pick-up as you leave.

8.  We will learn from our first weekend’s experience and adjust these guidelines as needed for the future.

9.  Daily Masses will not resume until Monday June 1st.   More information about these Masses and for Scheduling Memorial Masses will be forthcoming.

10.  We are in need of volunteers to help manage the flow of traffic at each Mass.   Please leave a message at the parish office with the Church and Mass time for which you are volunteering, and your phone number and email address. We will return your call when able.   St. Margaret: 781-272-3111 and St. Malachy: 781-272-5111.  

11.  These guidelines may be updated prior to May 30/31. Please check our Collaborative Website often: www.burlingtoncatholicma.org

 

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