Easing of COVID-19 Restrictions at Seton
Dear Members of the Seton Parish Family,
This weekend we celebrate Pentecost. On Sunday we will remember that day when the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out upon our young Church, birthed from the wounded side of Christ.
Given all that we have been through the last year, now, more than ever, we need the Spirit’s gifts of Knowledge and Wisdom. We certainly welcome the recent news about lessening of restrictions, however, always concerned with the most vulnerable among us, we seek wisdom in implementing them in our local community.
Given new guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the easing of COVID-19 restriction by New York State authorities, the Vicar General has asked us to consider the following:
In offices and meeting settings where there are unvaccinated individuals or the vaccination status of all individuals is not known, those individuals are required to continue to follow mask and social distancing requirements.
Because our churches are open to the public as a welcome place for people regardless of vaccination status, parishes are advised to create a “physical distance section” within the church for those who are required to wear masks and engage in physical distancing and/or for those who may be fully vaccinated but wish to continue to follow distancing practices.
We recognize that not everyone will be ready for an immediate return to normal activities. In addition, many are now returning to church who may be anxious about large mixed gatherings. Using the above guidance from the Archdiocese, we here at Seton will slowly begin to relax our rules as well. Starting this week:
We ask all people to continue to wear masks in church for the time being. This will help to make everyone feel comfortable. Please see an usher if you did not bring a mask.
Holy water fonts will continue to remain empty. Holy water is available from the dispenser by the sacristy.
We will create “physical distance sections” by the sanctuary. Please do not sit in the areas marked by blue tape.
Most of the church will be open for general seating. Please keep a distance of three feet from the person next to you. Those who live together may sit together.
Families with unvaccinated children under the age of 12 may sit together in general seating. Those with young children are encouraged to use the chapel.
Missalettes will be placed in our pews the beginning of June. We will continue to post Mass texts on our website for the time being.
Those who distribute Holy Communion will continue to use masks and follow parish sanitation protocols.
For now, we will not resume the offertory gifts procession, passed basket collections, and the sign of peace.
First and second collections may be dropped in the collection boxes or sent to the rectory office. Online giving may be accessed on our website:
We will continue to engage in enhanced cleaning of the church and all gathering places.
Please use your best judgment (especially members of the at-risk populations) about coming to church. Those who feel sick in any way should not enter the church, offices or meeting rooms. As always, t
he safety and comfort of our parish families remain our primary concern.
Cardinal Dolan has indicated that the obligation to assist at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass on Saturday afternoon/Sunday remains in effect for those who are healthy and well.
Those Catholics who cannot attend Mass because of age, sickness, disability or other serious reasons are excused, as always. And for now, those who feel they are at heightened risk of contracting or spreading COVID-19 are also excused.
Individuals who cannot attend Mass are urged to make Sundays holy at home and to pray, read the Scriptures, view televised or livestreamed Masses, and participate in acts of charity. Here at Seton the daily 9:00am and the Sunday 11:00am Masses are livestreamed on our website:
As we transition away from an elevated state of precaution around the pandemic and take steps toward normality, we ask you to remember the good health habits that have served us so well until this point. As we have done throughout the pandemic, we must continue to live with a spirit of cooperation and charity to adapt to the circumstances we now face and, importantly, to care for and protect those who are most vulnerable and afraid. We continue to pray for the wisdom to discern which changes to keep in place and which ones can and should be relaxed as we move forward.
May our gracious Lord continue to bless and protect you and your loved ones.
on Wednesday, May 19 at 9:14PM