Re-gathering the Faith Community in Worship

In light of the ‘Roadmap for Re-opening Society and Business’ issued by the Government on the 30th April 2020, we in the pastoral area are in the process of defining a similar roadmap for enabling the faith community to gather again in ways of Worship.

It will not be possible, due to requirements for social distancing to protect the health of people, to resume church services as when they operated before the church buildings closed.  Nor is it desirable to resume such services as if nothing has changed.

While the desire is to re-open our church buildings and to resume activities of a vibrant living faith community, we must do so cautiously.

Over the past two weeks, Fr. John and Fr. Gerard, the chairs of the two PPC’s, Rachel Kerrigan and Liam McCabe along with the Pastoral Worker Paul have met to consider how to bring about a regathering of the faith community in line with the Government Roadmap for Re-opening Society and Business’ issued on the 30th April 2020.

This small group worked to asses the documentation and guidelines from the diocese and other agencies with the intention to bring an outline roadmap for the pastoral area to a larger group for consideration.

Phase 1, opening the church buildings for private prayer,  begins on Wednesday 20th May. 

Note however, due to essential maintenance work in The Holy Rosary church, it will not reopen until Sunday the 24th.

The next phases are being worked on by a working group consisting of the Parish Pastoral Councils, the Pastoral and other leadership teams in the parish.  Relevant ministry groups will be consulted as part of this process.

Based on the government guidelines we cannot resume any public liturgies until after the 20th July and large gatherings until after the 10th August at the earliest.

The dioceses in Ireland have provided a checklist to parishes for planning towards managing social distancing for large gatherings in churches and are working on guidelines for celebrating Eucharist in a meaningful way.

We will update this communication with details on further phases as they are agreed and signed off by the diocese.

For Phase 1: Opening of the church buildings for private prayer – click here

For Phase 2: Initial thoughts on providing the Sacrament of Reconciliation, See page 6 of the Pastoral Area Roadmap For Reopening of Buildings and Resuming Services

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The following are links to various resources available at present.

Overview of Govenment of Ireland Phases for Reopening Society and Business

Government of Ireland Roadmap for Reopening Society and Business 

Guidelines on Sacraments and Pastoral Care

Dublin Diocese Checklist for Reopening Churches for Public Gatherings