Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Bishop Parkes issued a directive this afternoon regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. It reads, in part:
…out of deep pastoral concern for the most vulnerable among us, after prayer and discernment, effective immediately, I have decided to suspend the public celebration of Masses in the Diocese of St. Petersburg until it can be determined that it is safe to return to normal schedules and public worship. Therefore, the faithful of the Diocese of St. Petersburg and all visitors present in this diocese are dispensed from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass for as long as the suspension of public celebration of the Mass is in effect.
Sacred Heart will, of course, follow the leadership of our Bishop. Therefore, all public liturgical events, daily and weekend Masses, and adoration are cancelled until further notice.
Allow me to add a few items specific to our parish.
- Fr. Vijay and I will offer a private Mass each day for the intentions previously requested for those dates. We will also hold up in prayer our parish community and all those affected by this outbreak.
- We will live stream a Mass at 9:30am Sunday morning via our Facebook page. Fr. Vijay will offer a Spanish live stream Mass at 11am beginning April 5th.
- The office will be closed to visitors. If you have business with the office, please call us at 727-541-4447 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
- The Bishop directed us to postpone the upcoming Confirmations and First Communion.
- We will celebrate funerals with only the immediate family in attendance and baptize only in emergency cases.
- The Chapel will be open Monday through Friday for private prayer between 9am and 5pm. Occupancy is limited to 10 people.
- You can find the weekly bulletin on this website. It would be available on Thursday of each week.
- We’ll send out emails and text messages via Flocknote to say in touch.
- We’ll post a recording of the homily from the Sunday 9:30am Mass by noon on Monday to our YouTube channel. Search for Fr. Kevin Yarnell on YouTube.
Let’s continue to remember that our Lord is present with us!