May 11, 2020 - A fuller explanation of the necessary conditions for a return of Mass in the parishes of the Archdiocese of Mobile:
From Most Reverend Thomas J. Rodi, Archbishop of Mobile:
In accord with directives from Governor Ivey and after previous consultation with the Presbyteral Council, below arethe requirements for any Catholic parish which wishes to have Mass and for any priest who celebrates Mass withothers present. These requirements must be followed strictly for the good of all.
The following actions will be required for any Mass in the Archdiocese of Mobile. Any church unable to strictly fulfill these requirements may not have public Masses.
- No one, clergy or laity, is to attend Mass if they are sick.
- A general dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass remains in
- Social spacing in churches is Only every other pew may be used; the other pew will need to be cordoned off by ribbon or cord.
- The use of pews must respect social distancing. Care must be exercised that only the proper number ofpeople attend Mass so that social distancing may be This means that no one is to sit within 6 feet of one another unless living in the same household.
- Hymnals and other shared worship aids may not be Only “one use” worship aids may be used.
- A choir or musicians may be present but only if the same social distancing is
- Liturgical ministers must also observe social
- Offertory baskets may not be passed person to
- The Sign of Peace may be retained but no physical contact is
- Communicants are to keep social distancing when in the Communion
- Communion is not to be distributed from the
- Only the priest(s) may distribute
- Priests are to sanitize their hands before distributing
- Only priest concelebrants may use intinction. Deacons may only receive the consecrated host.
- Communicants are to maintain social distancing when receiving Communion from the priest.
- No kneelers, Communion rails, or other shared surfaces may be used at the distribution of Communion.
- Although people may wear masks and gloves to Mass, Communion may not be distributed or received with
- The priest is to take care that he does not touch the If he does, he is to resanitize his hands before continuing distribution of Communion.
- People should be asked to maintain social distancing when departing the church at the end of
- Pews/common surfaces are to be disinfected between
- Holy Water fonts are to remain
- There is to be no offertory procession.
- The priest is to wear a mask during the distribution of He is not to wear a mask while celebrating the Mass.
- Because only priests may distribute Communion, Communion Services in the absence of a priest are not
- Servers should sanitize their hands before preparing the
- The prohibition of shared worship aids in the pews, such as hymnals and missalettes, also includes any othermaterial in the pews such as envelopes, visitor cards, pencils,
- The Governor, other civil authorities and medical authorities have stressed that social distancing is to be We must cooperate with this. All are to remain at least six feet distance from one another unlessthey live in the same household. All are to maintain this social distancing while in the Communion line andwhile receiving Communion.
- No outdoor Masses are Communion is not to be distributed to people in cars.
Some have asked whether there is a set number of people who can attend Mass. It is not possible to have a set number due to the varying sizes of our churches. Instead of a set number, it is required to have social distancing of six feet between individuals and only to use every other pew.
It is imperative to have a plan, and personnel present at Masses, to limit the number of people entering the church so that social distancing may be maintained.
These regulations may not seem normal for us, and they aren’t. However, these are not normal times. These regulations must be adhered to since the coronavirus remains among us. Last Friday (May 8, 2020) was the highest number of new cases yet recorded in Alabama in one day. We have not “turned the corner.” This virus remains a deadly danger. Our people are getting sick. Our people are dying. Every priest must follow these regulations in order to celebrate public Masses. Every parish must follow these regulations in order to have public Masses. This situation is that serious. Parishioners need to understand these regulations and adhere to them.
This is posted on the church door to remind everyone of the common requirements for attendance at Mass:
Public Masses resume Tuesday, May 12
Monday at 11:30 AM, Wednesday at 6:00 PM
Tuesday & Thursday at 9:00 AM
Saturday (vigil) at 5:00 PM, Sunday at 8:00 & 11:00 AM
(Confessions: Wednesday from 5:00-5:45 PM, Saturday from 4:00-4:45 PM.)
Notes for Mass:
- Do not attend Mass with a fever or if you are sick.
- Maintain social distancing entering and leaving the church, when sitting in a pew, and while in line to receive Holy Communion. Please use only the indicated pews.
- Masks and gloves may be worn, but Holy Communion cannot be received wearing gloves.
- The Archbishop highly recommends reception of Holy Communion in the hand. If you choose to receive on the tongue, please come up after those receiving on the hand.
- No physical contact is required at the Sign of Peace.
- If you pick up a song sheet or bulletin, please take it with you or put it in the trash, do not leave anything in the pew or anywhere else for others to use.
- All are asked to sanitize their hands before and after Mass.
The priest will sanitize his hands before Mass and before distribution of Holy Communion. The pews and other common surfaces need to be disinfected between Masses, please lend a hand by wiping the front and back of where you were sitting.
Following these regulations will help keep everyone safer.
Thank you for doing so and for attending Mass at St. Joseph!
It is good to have you back home!!
May 7, 2020 - Spanish Mass and Confessions
I have good news... and bad news. The good news is that the Spanish Mass will resume this Sunday, May 10th, at 4:00 PM!! The bad news is that, just like the other Masses, there can only be a total of 9 people in attendance (Fr. Vince and 8 others). Please call the office (334-365-8680) to reserve a spot. Also, confessions in Spanish will be heard before the Mass on Sunday, from 3:00-3:45... and Holy Communion will be distributed to all who are interested after Mass outside of the church doors facing the parking lot (approximately 4:45-5:15 PM).
May 3, 2020 (IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT):
Excepts from the recent statement of Archbishop Thomas Rodi (May 2, 2020):
On Thursday, April 30, the “Stay at Home” order of the State of Alabama ended. The people of the Archdiocese of Mobile have cooperated fully with this order out of concern for the health of neighbor.
Governor Ivey’s new order does not permit religious congregations to worship but does allow gatherings of 9 people or fewer. In keeping with this, effective Tuesday, May 5, priests have permission to celebrate Mass when there is a maximum of 9 people present. Priests must be diligent to make certain attendance does not exceed 9. In addition, parish meetings may be held as long as no more than 9 people are present.
In addition, effective Tuesday, May 5, priests may distribute the Eucharist in front of their churches at a time of their choosing. No religious service is to be conducted in conjunction with this. People may come and receive the Eucharist. They are to be asked to depart immediately. No one is required to come to church to receive the Eucharist.
IMPLEMENTATION IN OUR PARISH
During these difficult times, no one is required to participate in Mass nor come to church to receive the Eucharist outside of Mass, especially those who are at high risk of getting sick.
Also, if you are sick, please do not come to Mass nor to receive Communion at the church. I regularly visit the sick and/or homebound and bring them Holy Communion. Please call or email Marie DeLong if you would like such a visit (334-202-1042, [email protected]). I am still not allowed to enter hospitals nor other care facilities.
This will be our daily Mass schedule starting Tuesday, May 5th:
Monday at 5:00 PM.
Tuesday at 8:30 AM & 5:00 PM.
Wednesday at 8:30 AM & 5:00 PM.
Thursday at 8:30 AM & 5:00 PM.
Saturday (vigil) at 5:00 PM.
Sunday at 8:00 AM.
With the strict limitation of 9 people per Mass, please call or email Paul Gauthe (Mon-Thurs from 8:00 AM–5:00 PM) in the church office (365-8680, [email protected]) to reserve a spot to attend. Each person can be scheduled for only one Mass at a time. Once they have attended that Mass, they may sign up for another.
The church will be open for personal prayer from 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM each day.
Holy Communion will be distributed outside of the main doors of our church at these times:
Monday and Wednesday from 5:30-5:45 PM or until the line ends (whichever is later).
Tuesday and Thursday from 9:00-9:15 AM or until the line ends (whichever is later).
Saturday from 5:45-6:15 PM or until the line ends (whichever is later).
When preparing to receive Holy Communion, it is recommended that you read the Scripture readings for the day (USCCB.org) or, better yet, watch an internet Mass. Here are a few of the many options:
Daily from Archbishop Rodi’s chapel at 8:00 AM (www.MobArch.org).
Daily from Bishop Barron’s chapel at 8:15 AM (www.wordonfire.org/daily-Mass/).
Daily on EWTN at 7:00 AM (on cable or at EWTN.com).
Our parish Sunday Mass on our facebook page at 8:00 AM.
Another valuable and important way to prepare to receive Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist in by going to confession.
Monday and Wednesday from 4:00-4:45 PM.
Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday from 9:30-10:00 AM.
Saturday from 4:00-4:45 PM.
Until we are closer to fully operational, I will continue to record a daily video message based on the Mass readings of the day that will be posted on our parish facebook page.
I am very excited about this development and the availability of the Eucharist to everyone.
God bless you all,
Father James Dean
April 18, 2020
I should have shared this good news with the parish days ago. On Easter Sunday, 3 members of the Knell family were received into the Catholic Church, Sarah, Sophia and Tristan. Each of them were previously baptized and received the sacraments of Confirmation and the Holy Eucharist. Kyle Knell was the sponsor of his wife, Sarah, and their children. Unfortunately for us, they moved during Lent to Fort Walton Beach, Florida. We will miss them, but our loss is Florida's gain.
And on the same awesome topic, Enyonam Zottor, was received into the Catholic Church last Tuesday. She was accompanied by her husband, Kossi, and their children. We are blessed to have them here from Ghana. Enyonam also had been previously baptized and received the sacraments of Confirmation and the Holy Eucharist. Her sponsor was Frances Peek.
God bless our parish as we grow in grace and numbers,
April 16, 2020
There can be only one page in the "current news" tab. So I will post the most current news on top, then a dividing line (~), and then the previous news (with the more current on top, with each message dated).
If you have not heard, Archbishop Rodi extended the suspension of public worship services and most church activities through out the Archdiocese of Mobile INDEFINITELY!
I would encourage each of our parishioners to watch the Mass online (we will broadcast ours on Sundays at 7:00 AM), to use FORMED to learn more about our wonderful Catholic faith, to pray more (read the Bible - especially the daily Mass readings [usccb.org], Rosary, Divine Mercy chaplet) and spend time with your family - even doing both together(!), and to watch my daily video reflection on the readings from Mass of the day if you need more penance in your life (https://www.facebook.com/StJosephCathicChurchPrattville/).
I am available if you need a visit to the homebound or the sick (with reception of the sacraments), especially if someone is in danger of death.
I would also like to say that I am overwhelmed at the generosity of our parishioners in supporting our parish financially during this difficult time! All I can say is WOW and THANK YOU!!!
Let us continue to pray for a speedy discovery for a treatment and/or cure to the coronavirus, especially so that we can return to the worship of our Lord in community!
God bless you all,
April 8, 2020
Greetings from St. Joseph HQ! I am just now activating this CURRENT NEWS tab on our website. Previously, I had been posting things on facebook, but everyone may not be as familiar or comfortable finding things there. So from now on, anything I share on facebook I will also record under this tab. If it is a video, you still have to go there to view it. Speaking of which, I have been posting reflections on the readings from the daily Masses. They are available here: https://www.facebook.com/StJosephCathicChurchPrattville/.
And since this site is for current news... I have some GREAT NEWS to share! We now have a new member in our Catholic faith and our parish church! Brenda Roberts was received into the Catholic Church this morning. Already baptized, she received the sacraments of Confirmation and Holy Communion. It was a small but joyful celebration attended by her husband, Gundy, and her sponsor, Frances Peek!! Due to the coronavirus, we cannot receive people into the Church as we usually do at the Easter vigil Mass. Each candidate will be scheduling a ceremony where their spouse, immediate family and sponsor are the only attendees.
Much more to come... so check this tab regularly and please tell other parishioners about it!
May God bless each of you with good health and, more importantly, with His grace!
In Jesus with Mary,