Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,

Our lives have been impacted by these challenging days of this world-wide pandemic in many ways, including our lives of faith. One of those impacts has affected the reception of the Sacraments, which in some cases have been delayed or made inaccessible. In any given year, I have the privilege of celebrating the Sacrament of Confirmation for on average 1,000 young people and adults throughout our beautiful Diocese. Of the many wonderful aspects of being your Bishop, celebrating Confirmations, and visiting so many of our Parishes for these major events, are truly highlights of my ministry.

However, due to COVID-19, all Confirmations during the spring of this year were postponed. It was my intention and sincere hope that this fall, we would be able to schedule regional Confirmations in order to celebrate the postponed spring Confirmations as well as those scheduled for this fall. However, it has become very clear that will not be possible since the pandemic remains a very serious concern, in that we are still restricted in what we can do, and must maintain social distancing with limited numbers of people able to gather at one time.

During these past few weeks, I have prayerfully and carefully pondered what to do. I have discussed this matter with our Presbyteral Council, with my diocesan staff, and with all our priests and deacons at virtual Deanery meetings held last week. As a result, I have decided to make available to each Pastor the possibility of requesting the extraordinary permission to celebrate the Sacrament of Confirmation for those in their Parish who are prepared and eligible to receive this Sacrament. This permission, once granted, will be valid only from August 1, 2020 until November 28, 2020. After consultation and proper planning with his Parish leadership and the families of the Candidates for Confirmation, each Pastor will submit the information with a request for permission to me. Once I have reviewed the materials and determine that all is in order, I will grant the permission.

While I will not have the joy of actually being present for each parish celebration of Confirmation, I do intend to be directly involved in several ways: I am writing a special Pastoral Letter to those to be Confirmed, encouraging them during this important time in their faith journey; I will be providing a video message to each parish group of Candidates in which I will share with them how special this Sacrament is for their lives, and to express my personal disappointment at not being able to be with them in person; and I will provide for each Candidate a signed remembrance card from me on the day of their Confirmation. In addition, on the day of each Parish Confirmation, I will offer my Mass that same day for their spiritual intentions.

For the Bishop not to administer this Sacrament with our young people is not ideal; it is also a great personal disappointment for me. However, to delay or withhold the Sacrament and its graces until the pandemic is over would be an even greater disappointment. These Candidates for Confirmation, prepared and disposed to receive this Sacrament, need the guidance and strength of the Holy Spirit, and the seven-fold gifts He will bring to them: Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel, Fortitude (Courage), Knowledge, Piety and Fear of the Lord (Wonder and Awe). Therefore, for the greater good, I am providing this exception and willing to grant this extraordinary permission so that the Sacramental graces can be received.

Please prayerfully remember all those to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation this fall. Let us also pray for one another, that our faith will remain strong, and that God’s Loving Presence and the gifts of the Sacraments will keep us alive in His Spirit!

Assuring you of my daily prayers, and humbly asking for your prayers for me, I remain

Faithfully yours in Christ,
Most Rev. Paul J. Bradley,  Bishop of Kalamazoo

May 15, 2020 Page 1
GUIDELINES FOR THE FAITHFUL
FOR PUBLIC CELEBRATIONS OF THE HOLY MASS*

*These Guidelines are in effect beginning May 27, 2020 and throughout the duration of Parish Community Level 1 of our return to the public celebration of Holy Mass. The guidelines may be amended if/when the circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic change.

Dispensation from the Obligation of Sunday and Holy Day Masses
The dispensation from the Sunday obligation to attend Mass is granted to all the faithful through September 6, 2020. All the faithful however have the obligation to “keep holy the Lord’s Day” and on Sundays are encouraged to spend time in prayer, participate in a live stream of the Mass, meditate on the Lord’s Passion, Death and Resurrection, and participate in Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy.
**Please note the date of the General Dispensation is at the discretion of the Bishop and is subject to change based on current conditions related to the managing the spread of the pandemic and in consultation with federal, state and local healthcare recommendations.

Timelines
Preparatory Stage: Beginning May 13, 2020 through the time leading up to the first public celebration of Mass, anticipated for May 27, 2020. The General Dispensation remains in effect.
Parish Community Level One: Welcome Back! Return to Public Mass, May 27, 2020; The General Dispensation continues through September 6, 2020.
Parish Community Level Two: To be implemented with lifting of restrictions and allowance of more capacity at Parishes.
Parish Community Level Three: Full Capacity allowed at Parishes; Dispensation no longer in effect

CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF KALAMAZOO
May 15, 2020 Page 2
General Guiding Principles

The Common Good: We must consider the common good as we determine all that we do.
The common good considers the spiritual, financial, mental, and physical health of the entire society. During this time we must balance the spiritual health and the physical health of the
faithful. This is especially true for the most vulnerable members of our populations, including the elderly and those with chronic illnesses. We also must rely on medical personnel and scientists to give the best advice in these matters.
Keep the Liturgical Year: Even in the darkest days of the pandemic, the Holy Father and his Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments made clear that Easter would not be “postponed.” Liturgical seasons preceded it and followed it. Similarly, the entire course of the liturgical year is to be maintained and the primacy of Sunday is to be respected
(General Norms for the Liturgical Year and the Calendar, 4; Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2177).

Limited Attendance: The dispensation for the requirement to attend Sunday Mass will be extended. Those at higher risk; namely, the elderly, the immune-compromised and hospital workers, may likely need to wait until Level 3 before returning to the public celebration of the Mass. There might be creative solutions to allow people in these categories to attend Mass with a decreased risk of contamination (e.g. grocery stores with hours specific to these populations) but it will be some time before we can resume full capacity at our churches.

Continuance of Live-streamed/Televised Masses andCommunication: The continuation of live-streamed liturgies is highly encouraged. All parishes that are currently livestreaming Mass have been encouraged to continue the practice at least one Mass each weekend, for those who are homebound, sick, or otherwise vulnerable. Clergy and Parish staffs are encouraged to continue to increase the communication to parishioners by using all means possible providing opportunities for catechesis and engagement in digital formats and video conferencing technology.

Prudence and Common Sense: Every reasonable means will be employed to keep the spread of COVID-19 under control, realizing, of course, the impossibility of creating a totally risk-free environment.

May 15, 2020 Page 3

Be informed: There will be a number of changes determined by your Pastor and Parish Preparation Team. Please visit your Parish website and review all Parish communication so you are informed as to the specifics regarding your Parish Community (e.g. Mass time changes, attendance procedures, etc.).

Grace and Understanding: None of us have lived through a pandemic before, and so there are likely to be mistakes and imperfections as we attempt to do so. Priests, leaders, parishioners, and all who assist, as well as the Diocese, are likely to make some incorrect assessments and decisions. We all will need the grace of humility and “a spirit of cooperation” to get through this together.

Safety and Hygiene Protocols
Our parish communities are a great good that we want to preserve. All those attending Mass are strongly encouraged to adhere to the following:
Masks (cloth face coverings) are to be worn by everyone approaching the church and inside the church (except for those under 2 years old and those who have a medical condition that impedes them from wearing a mask), as well as all church buildings.

Social distancing is necessary. There will be clear protocols that will change where you can sit, how you can greet people, and how to receive Holy Communion. You will need to keep six feet of distance between anyone not in your household for the foreseeable future at church.  Those who are sick or symptomatic should stay home.
Please wash your hands at home, and use hand sanitizer upon entering the church. You may also bring your own supply of hand sanitizer to use before Holy Communion.

Physical Distancing
The capacity of the church is limited to no more than 25% (one-fourth) of its total capacity to ensure proper social distancing is achievable.  A distance of six feet (6’) is to be maintained between persons in general, as much as possible (unless you reside in the same household).

May 15, 2020 Page 4

Seating availability will be clearly marked (such as designated seats in alternating pews with a 1 or 2-pew separation or seating in different sections for different Masses). Those living in the same household may sit together without social distancing.  Cry Rooms are closed until further notice due to the limited space constrictions and inability to ensure social distancing is possible.

Rest Rooms: No more than 1 person (or 1 parent + children from same household) allowed at a time.

Bulletins and Parish printed materials: Parish bulletins may be made available to parishioners in the narthex/vestibule, along with other printed materials, but will not be distributed by ushers or others. The Parish Bulletin should also be made available online.

Notes for Mass

Offertory Collection: Secure receptacles or supervised baskets will be available at the entrances to the church or other designated places. An offertory collection will not be taken up during the celebration of the Mass.

The Sign of Peace: This liturgical action, shared among the faithful, will continue to be a “contact-free” gesture.

Reception of Holy Communion
Holy Communion is to be distributed only under the Species of the Sacred Host. The Precious Blood is not to be distributed at this time.
The faithful have the right to receive either on the tongue or in the hand, according to the discipline of the Church Holy Communion may not be received in the hand if someone is wearing a glove. Instead, proper and diligent hand hygiene should be observed before and after distributing and/or receiving Holy Communion.  The faithful should remove any masks and gloves as they approach the minister.

May 15, 2020 Page 5

If possible, the reverence and the verbal exchange should take place 6 feet away: Bow – “The Body of Christ” – “Amen” – then step forward to receive.

Reception in the Hand: For those receiving in the hand, please approach the priest (or deacon or EMHC), placing your dominant hand under your less dominant hand creating a sort of throne upon which to receive the Lord. After receiving Jesus in your hand, step to the side, and place the Host gently in your mouth, making sure to consume any particles of the Eucharist that remain in your less dominant hand, as even the smallest particle is still Jesus. Then, simply replace your mask and return prayerfully to your seat.
Reception on the Tongue: During this time, it might be better to consider receiving in the hand; however, if you choose to receive on the tongue please adhere to the following: approach the priest (or deacon or Eucharistic Minister). Please allow time for the Host to be placed safely on your tongue, and for the one distributing to remove his hand, so as to avoid contact. After receiving, replace your mask and return prayerfully to your pew.

Dismissal:

The Presider will announce dismissal procedure at the conclusion of Mass. Please prepare to return to your vehicles promptly. It is not recommended that you congregate with other Parishioners.

Thank you for your prayer, patience and understanding during this time. Please visit www.diokzoo.org for updates.

Please send questions to: officeofcommunications@diokzoo.org
We ask that you please be courteous and charitable in your communication.

All Saints Superfest 2020

September

18-20, 2020

 

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, All Saints Superfest 2020 will not be held this year. We will still have our annual Superfest Raffle.

Raffle tickets will be distributed at Masses on the first two weekends of August and will be available in the parish offices. There are 10 tickets in each envelope. You may sell them, or buy them yourself.

Tickets are $10 each and the Grand Prize is $5,000. 2nd Prize is $1,500; 3rd, 4th and 5th Prize is $500. Seller of the winning Grand Prize ticket will also win $500.

Tickets stubs and money may be put in the Superfest envelope in the Sunday collection baskets, or returned to the parish offices. There is a weekly drawing for a $100 prize beginning August 16 for sellers who sold their 10 tickets, and continuing weekly for five weeks.

MCC Comments on End of Statewide Petition Drive

to Prohibit Dismemberment Abortion Procedure

(Lansing, Mich.) – Earlier today Right to Life of Michigan announced that it was ending its effort to place citizen-initiated legislation before the Michigan House of Representatives and State Senate that would prohibit the second trimester dismemberment abortion procedure due to an insufficient number of valid signatures. Commenting on today’s development is Rebecca Mastee, J.D., policy advocate for Michigan Catholic Conference:

“It goes without saying that after countless hours and with myriad people volunteering at hundreds of Catholic parishes across the state to collect signatures that this outcome is disappointing. Each and every person who assisted in this petition drive is cherished and thanked. We have incredible gratitude for their pro-life dedication and the tremendous effort to raise awareness while gathering signatures. St. Teresa of Calcutta taught us that God does not require us always to be successful, but rather to be faithful; indeed, the effort to protect human life through this petition drive was immense. Despite this setback, the drive to protect unborn human life will continue in earnest. Women and children deserve better.”

Michigan Catholic Conference is the official public policy voice of the Catholic Church in this state.

On October, 19, 2019 the Diocese of Kalamazoo is hosting a Eucharistic Congress to Ignite the Faith in Southwest Michigan.  This congress will bring together about 1000 of the faithful of the Diocese of Kalamazoo to unite in prayer and dialogue to inspire more faith in Southwest Michigan.

The faithful will gather at the Radisson Plaza Hotel in downtown Kalamazoo.  While at the congress they will pray, be encouraged by talks, and discuss in small groups how the Diocese of Kalamazoo can accompany families, foster more priests, and encourage the growth and sharing of the faith throughout their community.

We are currently looking for sponsors to assist with the approximate $50,000 cost of the event.  Sponsors will be listed in the program and throughout the venue as well as on the diocesan webpage and social media.  The higher level sponsors also include a specific room acknowledgement as indicated below.

The four levels of sponsorship are:

Tongues of Fire: $2,000 – includes digital acknowledgment on keynote room

Burning Bush: $1,000 – includes digital acknowledgement on a breakout room

Flaming torch: $500 – includes acknowledgement at lunch

Sanctuary Lamp – $250

If you would like to help sponsor this congress, you can sign up and make payment on our website at www.diokzoo.org/ecsponsorship.  If you have any question or would like to speak to someone about sponsorship opportunities please contact Tom Dowdall at tdowdall@diokzoo.org, or 269-903-0145.

Thank you for your support of this initiative to transform the Church in Southwest Michigan.

With the Love of Christ,

Jamin Herold

Executive Director – Parish Life and Lay Leadership

Director of Eucharistic Congress

Diocese of Kalamazoo

jherold@diokzoo.org

269-903-0183

GREAT GIFT IDEA!  BUY ANY RETREAT AS A CHRISTMAS GIFT FOR YOUR LOVED ONE!  

 

1. Young Adult Retreat 2019 – A Grown Up Look At the Virtues: Looking to get away to spend some time with the Lord during the season of Lent? Join us from Friday March 1st at 7 pm – Sunday March 3rd and take this time for prayer, presentations, recreation, reflection, and fellowship at Pretty Lake Camp (9123 West Q Ave., Mattawan, MI 49071). Cost is $50 per participant. Please register by contacting Tim McNamara (tmcnamara@diokzoo.org) and stay tuned for more information. God bless!

 

2. Diocesan Annual Lenten Retreat 2019 (Formally Diocesan Annual Open Retreat) – March 16-17, 2019 at Indian Lake Nazarene Camp (8258 Victory St., Vicksburg, MI 49097). Our facilitators are Madeline Haydon, Michelle Moynihan, and Nicole Kegley, all three who serve at their respective parish as Echo Apprentices. The retreat begins at 9:00 am on Saturday, March 16th and concludes at 11:30 am on Sunday, March 17th. There are two options available when you register – one is with an overnight stay and the second is for those who would like to commute. The cost structure is as follows (please note all rooms have two queen beds):

Single Occupancy: $120
Double Occupancy: $80
Triple Occupancy: $65
Quadruple Occupancy: $60
Commuter Rate: $40

Deadline for these prices is March 1st. After that there is an additional $20 added on and rooms will be given on a first come, first serve basis. All registrations are due by March 8th. To register, please visit https://imdisciple.com/lentenretreat For more information, please contact Tim McNamara attmcnamara@diokzoo.org.

3. Diocesan Women’s Retreat: Intended for any adult woman, this retreat is meant to provide intentional time for you to reconnect with the Lord Jesus Christ and to encounter other women from around the Diocese who desire to grow in their faith. This retreat will be held at Indian Lake Nazarene Camp (8258 Victory St., Vicksburg, MI 49097) on Saturday, November 2nd – Sunday, November 3rd. There are two options available when you register – one is with an overnight stay and the second is for those who would like to commute. The cost structure is as follows (please note all rooms have two queen beds):

Single Occupancy: $120
Double Occupancy: $80
Triple Occupancy: $65
Quadruple Occupancy: $60
Commuter Rate: $40

To register for the Women’s Retreat, please contact Tim McNamara at tmcnamara@diokzoo.org. Thank you and God bless!

 

 

MASS OF REPARATION AND HEALING FOR THE CHURCH

O C T O B E R 7 , 2 0 1 8 , 3 P . M .
S T . P H I L I P P A R I S H
1 1 2 C A P I T A L A V E N E – B A T T L E C R E E K , M I 4 9 0 1 7
DIOCESE OF KALAMAZOO
www.diokzoo.org – 269.349.8714
B I S H O P P A U L J . B R A D L E Y , C E L E B R A N T

At this critically important moment in the life of our Church we are called to
come together in prayer and devote our time for the intentions of the continued
healing of all victims of abuse and for the ongoing reparation and healing
of our Church. There will be time for Pastoral Conversation following the Mass.

 

 

DIOCESAN 50th WEDDING ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION:  A special Mass for couples of the Diocese of Kalamazoo who are celebrating their 50th Wedding Anniversaries in 2018 will be held on Sunday, October 14, 2018, 3:00 pm at St. Augustine Cathedral in Kalamazoo. Couples celebrating their 50th Anniversary any time in 2018 are asked to contact their parish office rectory so that their names can be submitted for a personal invitation from Bishop Bradley to participate in this celebration.

 

 

Join us for our annual fundraiser and enjoy good food, fun, and faith.

There are activities for people of all ages. Bring the family, have a great time, and support your parishes!

The 32nd All Saints Superfest will be held September 21, 22, and 23 on the grounds of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Battle Creek.

September Good News & Brews
Married and single young adults from college through their 30s are welcome to come enjoy discussion, fellowship and music from (newly named) Jeremiah and the Hebrews and featured speaker Sr. Joseph Andrew on holiness/vocation at Arcadia Brewing Company in Kalamazoo on Sept. 13 from 7 to 9 p.m. Future dates are: Oct. 11; Nov. 8; Dec. 13.