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4th Sunday of Lent – Fr. Steve message

An update and some helpful resources from Fr. Steve

Dear Friends,

There is such a wide range of ways to responding to what I am calling “Our New Parish Normal” for the time being.  First and foremost, I want to echo what many are sharing these days: “It is ok to not feel ok.”  A simple acknowledgement of that fact can be very assuring.  As Archbishop Perez has made clear, “the church has not closed” and we at the parish are working to stay attentive to your needs as well as to give to our parish family ways to grow spiritually in these tough days.  I want to assure you that we are here at the parish if you need us.

On our new parish website and our Facebook account there are links to many helps and guides provided by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and other sources that the parish is either doing now or will be doing in the weeks ahead.  I would like to offer some reflection videos or other sources of spiritual reflections to help us be more centered on God’s care and providence, even when we cannot understand.  Please see the videos from the Archbishop; his words are moving and meaningful. 

I want to thank you for all your support and care over the past week.  You have communicated your love and care so nicely.  I am very proud of the way we have tried to communicate and continue to minister to the parish as a staff.  I am in constant contact with the staff even though they are working from home. I asked the following of them:

  1. We have made a commitment to keep each other in prayer daily and to pray for the people of the parish.
  2. We have made a commitment to respond to phone calls and emails within a 24 hour window.
  3. We have made a commitment to think creatively so that we can minister to you through new venues.
  • Fr. Nelson is working on livestreaming the Spanish mass from his chapel at Devon Prep.
  •  Ann and Dave Battinieri have created on a link from our homepage to the Archbishop’s Facebook page for the live stream of his masses.
  •  Our worship ministers are helping plan video reflections and Sunday Homilies
  • Clare is working hard to keep the youth connected and engaging them spiritually.
  • Mark Griswold and Lia are sharing resources with the Caffe teachers and families and students.
  • Ed Grady with the 50+ group are reaching out to our seniors in the community to offer help with groceries or other needs.

I am confident that if we work together we can be the amazing Parish that we are growing into!!  Please make a commitment to private prayer and reflection.  Look over our STEPS program.  Once we move beyond these days, STEPS will be what we need to regather and regroup.

As we have discussed, per the Archbishop’s message, all public masses have been suspended effective at 12:00pm on Wednesday, March 18.

St. Norbert Church is available for private daily Prayer throughout the week from 9:00 AM until 12:00 Noon.  Please enter through the main entrance.  Please use the reserved area in the center of the main Church. Please note the Oratory will not be open for private prayer.  All other activities have been suspended.

Here are some resources and prayers to help us.

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has put together a number of links for mass and prayer.  Click Here for more info.

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia will offer live feed of Sunday Mass, 11:00 AM (replay on Facebook – use the link for more info.) Click Here for more info. 

Also,

WPVI TV, Channel 6: Sunday Masses are aired every Sunday morning from 5:30 to 6 a.m.

Daily mass can be viewed through – https://www.wordonfire.org/daily-mass/ 

Since we are unable to attend Mass and receive Holy Communion physically during this time here is a Prayer for Spiritual Communion.

Finally, let us continue to pray for an end to the Coronavirus.

Prayer for the End of the Coronavirus

Jesus Christ, you traveled through towns and villages “curing every disease and illness.” 

At your command, the sick were made well. 

Come to our aid now, in the midst of the global spread of the coronavirus, that we may experience your healing love.

Heal those who are sick with the virus. 

 

May they regain their strength and health through quality medical care.

Heal us from our fear, which prevents nations from working together and neighbors from helping one another.

Heal us from our pride, which can make us claim invulnerability to a disease 

that knows no borders.

 

Jesus Christ, you traveled through towns and villages “curing every disease and illness.” 

Come to our aid now, 

that we may experience your healing love.

Jesus Christ, healer of all, 

stay by our side in this time of uncertainty 

and sorrow.

 

Be with those who have died from the virus. 

May they be at rest with you 

in your eternal peace.

Be with the families of those who are sick or have died. As they worry and grieve, 

defend them from illness and despair. 

May they know your peace.

Be with the doctors, nurses, researchers and all medical professionals who seek to heal and help those affected and who put themselves 

at risk in the process. 

May they know your protection and peace.

Be with the leaders of all nations. 

Give them the foresight to act with charity and true concern for the well-being of the people they are meant to serve. 

Give them the wisdom to invest in long-term solutions that will help prepare for 

or prevent future outbreaks. 

May they know your peace, 

as they work together to achieve it on earth.

 

Whether we are home or abroad, 

surrounded by many people suffering from 

this illness or only a few, 

Jesus Christ, 

stay with us as we endure and mourn,

 persist and prepare. 

In place of our anxiety, give us your peace.

Jesus Christ, heal us.

 

Prayerfully in Christ,

Fr. Steve