Letter from Fr. Kasel
May the Peace of Christ be in your hearts and the loving hearts of Mary and St. Joseph come to our aid!
Due to the coronavirus outbreak and the requirements given to us by the State Health Department, which includes limiting gatherings to ten (10) or fewer people, Archbishop Hebda has decided it is necessary to suspend all scheduled public Holy Masses throughout the Archdiocese. This decision will be reviewed in two weeks. What this specifically means is:
All Sunday Holy Masses are suspended.
All weekday Holy Masses are suspended.
All scheduled Stations of the Cross are canceled.
No meetings may be held at our churches during this time.
Funerals are permitted with the celebrant and 9 others.
Weddings are permitted with the celebrant and 9 others.
Baptisms are permitted with the celebrant and 9 others.
Priests are available for the dying, the sick and the Sacrament of Anointing.
St. Michael Fish Frys and all other fundraisers are canceled.
Our Lord’s command to keep Holy the Lord’s Day:
Even though Holy Mass is suspended, our Lord desires you to keep His command to keep Sunday Holy. To assist you with this, I hope to have in place the possibility to live stream Holy Mass this coming Sunday. If this becomes certain to be possible, I will communicate that to you in the next few days. In the meantime, other options for viewing Holy Mass include:
I encourage households to take at least an hour for quiet prayer on Sundays. This time could include prayerful participation in watching Holy Mass; reading Sacred Scripture, praying the Rosary, praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet, praying the attached Litanies and any other prayers that you may desire.
Finally, fostering an atmosphere of silence through turning off the television, computer and other devices for the sake of better listening to our Lord is very beneficial!
Spiritual Communion: I encourage all to make frequent spiritual Holy Communions with our good Lord each day. Ask the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph to assist you in this interior practice. Here is a good prayer to help you:
My Jesus, I believe that You are truly present, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Most Holy Eucharist. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally in the Most Holy Eucharist, please come at least spiritually into my heart now.
I spiritually embrace You and choose to unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You and Your Love. Thank You, Jesus! I love You! Amen.
Adoration: on Tuesdays at the Church of St. Paul will continue, and adoration on Wednesdays at Holy Trinity and the Church of St. Michael will continue. I want all parishioners to increase your striving for growth in Faith and Love for our good Lord in this time of trial.
Sacrament of Confession: I am working on a plan to have the churches open for personal prayer and Confession. I will send that out to you when it is complete.
In relationship with our good Lord, what are we to do?
During the Old Covenant era, we are told in Sacred Scripture, the Israelites were carried off to Babylon and had lost the possibility to offer worship in the Temple. The Israelites were so distressed that they were ready to give up on God. But Daniel (Daniel 3:39-41) pleaded with God for himself and his fellow Israelites:
With contrite heart and humble spirit
let us be received;
As though it were burnt offerings of rams and bullocks,
or thousands of fat lambs,
So let our sacrifice be in your presence today
as we follow you unreservedly;
for those who trust in you cannot be put to shame.
And now we follow you with our whole heart,
we fear you and we pray to you.
After the loss of attending Holy Mass, which is our Catholic external form of worship, I ask you to resolve and be determined that your relationship with God will grow deeply within your soul, down into your heart like we read in the prayer of Daniel.
I ask you to humble yourself and beg for God's mercy, and to be aware that peace in the world, stability in society and personal health are all blessings to be understood in light of the will of God. We need to pray for these blessings to be maintained and furthered according to God’s will at this time.
Even if we lose the possibility of assisting at Holy Mass for a time, no one can take away our necessity to keep Holy the Lord's Day and to orient all of our lives toward loving God, neighbor and self; and doing all for greater glory of God.
Finally, I urge all our parishioners who are able to plan to make a Sacramental Confession in the coming days or weeks.
May God bless you!
In Christ through Mary,
Father Randal Kasel