Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I assume you have heard by now, Our Bishop, Bishop Burbidge, has announced a series of major changes we must make in order to do our part to protect the health and safety of ourselves and our entire country. You can watch our Bishop’s announcement here: https://www.arlingtondiocese.org/press-releases/2020/updated-diocese-of-arlington-response-to-concerns-of-the-coronavirus/
All public celebrations of Mass are canceled throughout the Diocese until further notice. There are several places where we can view the Mass online, such as:
Basilica of the Immaculate Conception Sundays 10:30am
EWTN Daily Mass 8am/ Sunday Mass 8am and 12pm
All priests will be celebrating Mass privately for the intentions already designated and for relief and assistance to all affected in any way by coronavirus. Homilies will be posted on parish websites.
We are encouraged to devote extra time to communal prayer in our homes along with extra private prayers and devotions while we are deprived of being present at the Holy Mass and of receiving Holy Communion.
You can virtually attend Eucharistic Adoration online. Perpetual Adoration can be observed here:
We, at St. Isidore, will be leaving the Church open from 8AM to 9PM every day so people can come and pray in the presence of our Eucharistic Lord. When visiting the Church, we are advised to keep a safe distance apart and we are forbidden to have more than 10 people in the Church at the same time.
We will have Confession available as scheduled on Wednesdays of Lent from 6:30PM – 8PM, along with Adoration from 7PM to 8PM. On Fridays will have Adoration from 1PM – 9PM.
We would recommend a prayer of Spiritual Communion such as:
“My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.”
Of course, the Rosary is always a powerful prayer and the Chaplet of Divine Mercy seems particularly fitting to voice our cry to God for grace, mercy, healing and conversion of hearts during this time of trial. We will also have booklets for the Stations of the Cross at the Church for your use.
Other pertinent changes include:
- Weddings and Funerals should continue only if absolutely necessary, with attendance limited to immediate family members.
- Pastoral care of the sick should be limited to those who are dying and those with Coronavirus who request the Sacraments.
- Communion should not be brought to any other parishioner who is home-bound or who cannot attend Mass.
- Priests are asked to find other ways of comforting and praying with the home-bound, such as praying together over the phone.
- “Acts of Spiritual Communion” should be available on the parish website.
- Deacons and lay volunteers should not be visiting the sick in any official capacity.
We hope this information is helpful. Please call if you have any questions. As you can imagine, things can change rapidly. We all know, throughout history and in every generation, trials will come. We also know, Jesus risen from the dead has won ultimate victory over sin, death and all forms of suffering. If we but persevere in faith and love, trusting in the Lord, all things will work together for our purification, the good of our eternal souls, and eternal happiness with our Awesome, Most Holy, God of infinite Love: Father, Son and Holy Spirit!
May peace and grace be with you, especially in the midst of the storm!
Fr. Terry Staples