Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Please allow me to update you on our ongoing consideration of modifying our Sunday Mass schedule. First, let’s review the progress up to this point.
During our parish Open Forums held in October and November of 2015, several parishioners discussed the desirability of converting the three English Masses on Sundays into two Masses, especially for the purpose of relieving the burden on the lay ministers who help make the Masses possible.
The Parish Revitalization Team, which I formed in the winter of 2017 and which was composed of representatives of all parish ministries and apostolates, produced its “Final Report” in late spring of 2017. The report included a recommendation that the three Sunday Masses in English be converted into two Masses in order to bring parishioners together more fully and frequently, especially during the planned time in between the two proposed Masses.
It is increasingly necessary for one of the two priests assigned to Saint Mary’s to be made available on some weekends to cover Mass in other parishes. Since we have four Masses each Sunday at Saint Mary’s, this creates a problem whenever one priest here is covering for a priest in another parish.
On March 2nd, I discussed all of the considerations above with Bishop Stika.
Participants in the March 14th Open Forum expressed a consensus to revise the Sunday schedule.
The Parish Pastoral Council discussed all of the above considerations on March 19th.
On Tuesday, May 7th, I discussed all of this further with Bishop Stika. Rather than insisting that we make a definitive decision, he is open to permitting a modified schedule on an experimental basis.
So, after several years of discussion, consultation and deliberation, I’m happy to announce that our new, experimental schedule will be: Saturday at 5:30 pm, and Sunday at 8 am, 10:30 am, and in Spanish at 2 pm. This will take effect the first Sunday of July, and will continue experimentally until Advent of this year.