Please Stay Safe

08-02-2020Pastor's LetterFr. Wilson

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

In the midst of this present pandemic, some people wonder if all our precautions are worth it. It’s sometimes difficult to persevere with no particular designated end if we don’t seem to have evidence that it affects us personally. To that end, I beg you to persevere. Many of you have told me of loved ones and even parishioners who have contracted the disease caused by the coronavirus. Please note that these cases were not contracted from attending Mass here at St. Mary’s. So far, they have been homebound, loved ones in nursing homes, or beloved relatives who live elsewhere. However, this is the reason we have the precautions we have.

The pandemic now affects us as a parish in a more direct way. As you know, Fr. Francisco was supposed to arrive Monday, August 3. However, I’m sorry to report that he is one of a few of our priests who has contracted COVID-19. By the time you read this, it will have been over two weeks since his diagnosis. Even as a young man the disease still has affected him acutely. The good news is that he is recovering very well. Please note that he is no longer shedding the virus. When he joins us, he will have been thoroughly checked many times, and he will not be a danger to anyone. Many post-COVID patients have found that people fear them, but there is no need. If anything, he will have those coveted antibodies against the virus that all of us hope to have one day. I will keep you posted. In the meantime, he has asked for our prayers for a full recovery.

I can’t tell you how moving it is to see our parishioners reaching out to others in need during this time. Many groups in our parish have been working behind the scenes to give direct help our local homeless. Here is a short note from Joan LaBone explaining the generosity of many in our parish: “We started to provide lunches the Sunday after Easter. The Youth Ministry had signed up to provide a meal for the regular scheduled Homeless Coalition Sunday, there was such a need and people willing to help that we kept doing it. As of July 26, we have provided approximately 100 lunches a week for 12 weeks, surpassing 1,000 this past week. The Homeless Coalition supplies lunches on the third Sunday. Any meals that are left after 3pm on Sunday are given to the Salvation Army kitchen to use during the week. All meals are donated mostly by youth families, with one week being donated by the members of The Catholic Women’s Association. This has been a great way for the youth to help in our community in a very real way. Most of the sandwiches are made by the young people.” What a blessing it is to be part of this parish family!

Finally, a reminder: I will never, ever text or email you for money or gift cards. Scammers are at it again, trolling throughgh our bulletin and website for phone numbers and emails trying to convince you they are me. Pray for them. If only they would put all that energy into doing good!

Yours in Christ and Our Lady,

Father Wilson