My Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
We find ourselves in a unique place with lots of people feeling fear and anxiety during this time. When difficult times come into our lives and we find ourselves unable to comprehend or understand; the enemy is quick to throw doubts and questions into our minds. We find ourselves questioning God's goodness, God's wisdom in allowing these things to happen. We may even be bitter and angry with God for allowing this to happen to us and wonder if God really understands. But God's word confidently reminds us that God does understand . . . God is in control and as St. Paul reminds us, “no one or nothing can separate us from God's love…even the most difficult of circumstances” (Rm 8:35). God wants us to trust Him in the trials of life.
Sadly, as a result of the current health situation, we are asked to take some drastic measures. Bishop Kettler has made the difficult decision to suspend all public weekday and weekend Masses in the Diocese of St. Cloud, effective immediately through Easter Monday, April 13. Below are the directions from the Bishop:
• All public weekday and weekend Masses are suspended effective immediately until April 13, the day after Easter. All Catholics are temporarily dispensed from the obligation by the Bishop until further notice.
• All baptisms are to be rescheduled.
• If a wedding needs to take place, a dispensation needs to be granted by the bishop.
• Funeral Masses are prohibited. However, graveside services are allowed and memorial Masses are encouraged for a later date.
• All Confirmations that were scheduled until April 13 are postponed to a later date.
• Communal Penance Services are cancelled but individual Confessions may be offered.
• All public Holy Week liturgies – including Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, Easter Vigil, and Easter Sunday are cancelled.
• As usual, churches ought to be open for private prayer and the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Social distancing is encouraged – at least 6 feet between people seated in prayer or standing in line.
• These directions are subject to change as warranted by unfolding circumstances.
It is true that many people are seeking positivity during this time and we can, with God’s grace, find a way to overcome this situation. Please follow our Facebook page and webpage for the daily updates and live streaming of the Mass. If you like to get the Bulletin online, please go to our webpage and subscribe with your email or please contact us (email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org). Our Churches will be open during the day for you to be with the Lord (Randall from 9am to 6pm everyday and Sobieski 9am to 6pm everyday) and in Flensburg we are having the Eucharistic Adoration on every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday from 11am to 7pm. We, the priests will be available for Confession during this time.
This is the time of social isolation or social distancing, that means we are going to take this time of silence to listen to the Lord. Parents, what a great opportunity for you to pray with your children. Spent your time with your family engaging your children in discussing and talking about God and Faith. Make some phone calls to your relatives, friends and neighbors and refresh the broken relationships, if any. Jesus was in the desert for forty days all by himself with God the Father. Let us take this time to be in his love and presence, instead of watching more youtube videos or going to the news sites or other frivolous things and we won’t hear the Lord’s still small voice. Let us be among the few who takes this time of Lenten silence and isolation and hear our Lord’s tender loving voice.
While your physical presence at Mass for the near future will be impossible, you are invited to embrace the practice of Spiritual Communion through reflection on the Scripture, quiet time before the Blessed Sacrament, going to Confession and receiving the Holy Communion (please call me) and yes, know that God is with His people. You can be part of the Rosary said by us, your priests that will be on KLTF on every Saturday at 6.45am. There will be Mass on every Sunday on KLTF Radio at 9.00 am. I encourage you to consider listening Spirit 92.9 and K-yes on AM 1180 or 93.5 FM for messaging of hope and encouragement.
This Lent will teach us in a unique way the priceless value of the Sacraments and especially the Mass. What a gift our Catholic Faith is as darkness sets in and our Faith “gives light to all in the house” (Mt 5:15). Know that you are in our prayers.
In Christ Jesus,
An Act of Spiritual Communion
Oh My Jesus,
I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love You above all things,
and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally,
come at least spiritually into my heart.
I embrace You as if You were already there
and unite myself wholly to You.
Never permit me to be separated from You.