FROM THE PASTOR’S DESK
As you are aware by now, the decision to re-open the churches in the Diocese of La Crosse has been reversed, and the dispensation of the obligation to attend Sunday Mass remains in effect. Here at St. John’s, we will keep track of the number of people attending the weekend Masses but will no longer require the sign-up beforehand. We will also do away with the taking of temperatures before Mass as we have not had a single case of an elevated temperature in the months we have been doing this. We will continue offering hand sanitizer and Holy Water as people enter and leave the church, hand out bulletins after Mass, and encourage social distancing while at Mass and mask usage well.
This decision also has an impact on our school building usage, but now that is on the back burner as well. The primary concern for building usage is for our school and keeping it open for our students and their families. Therefore we will continue limiting extra usage in the Columbia room, Schuh Hall, St Francis Hall and other venues used for various groups will not be allowed at this time. Direct parish functions such as council meetings will be allowed, but Bible studies and other small group activities will not be allowed. It is regrettable that we are forced into this, but we need to prioritize building usage, and we thank you for your understanding.
Please keep Bishop Callahan in your prayers, that his decisions will help lead his flock into ever flowing graces and sacramental lives. These are difficult times and difficult decisions.
We congratulate our Confirmation class of 2020. I believe this was Confirmation 3.5 for me as a priest. I was asked to offer it 2 times at my previous assignment, and one time when the Bishop was not feeling well, he asked me to take half of the class while he did the other half. Offering this sacrament is a powerful experience of the Holy Spirit in the lives of these young persons and for the priest as well. Please keep them in your prayers.
FAMILY FAITH FORMATION
We had our first Family Faith evening, and found it to be well attended. We offered dinner to over 100 families before the classes, and had a presentation for the parents as the students were in their classes. We will continue holding an in-person event once a month, with home study the rest of the month. This is something new for the families of the greater Marshfield area, but in speaking with various catechists and parents, it seems to be well received. We pray that this new format will be an avenue for a deeper relationship and for greater discipleship for our families, from parents to the very young.
OCTOBER IS ROSARY MONTH AND PROTECT LIFE
Please keep in mind the Rosary Rally to be held on Wednesday October 7th. This event will be held in Columbia Park beginning at 5:30 PM. In addition, beginning October 4th, there will be a live -streamed Rosary for Life on consecutive Sundays prayed by a Wisconsin Bishop. Bishop Callahan leads off on October 4th at 7:30 PM and Archbishop Listecki will offer the final Rosary on November 1st.