An Update on Reopening
From Fr. Rex Pillai, Administrator

Dear Saint Clement Parish family,

As you probably are aware, a few days ago the Archdiocese of Chicago released a multi-phased reopening plan for parishes to celebrate baptisms, weddings, funerals and reconciliation as well as offer private prayer. The Archdiocese has provided explicit and detailed instructions on how we are to go about with this process. Each phase of the process requires a certification from the Archdiocese. The requirements for certification are publicly available at

In phase 1 we will prepare to celebrate baptisms, weddings, funerals and reconciliation with less than ten people in the church at any given time. 

In phase 1A we will prepare to open the church for private prayer and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament with under ten people in the church at any given time. 

Phase 2 has not been announced yet. This is the phase where we will begin to celebrate public liturgies and Masses with limited capacity. The Archdiocese will continue to work with medical experts and civil authorities before determining the plan for phase 2. We most likely will not reach this phase for quite some time. 

The process for certification requires the parish to put in place a Parish Reopening Leadership Team who will oversee the entire process. The staff and I are working to put together this small group. If you are interested in being considered, please email .

We are also looking for team captains and volunteers who will organize set up, hospitality and cleaning of the church.

Reopening is much more than unlocking the doors and celebrating sacraments. We will be working on the required items for certification. From traffic flow and social distancing, to limiting capacity, sanitizing hands, ensuring all are masked, providing face shields for priests, screening participants, managing the space while the church is open and cleaning once it is closed. This is no small task and will require our community to adjust our habits and step into new leadership roles. 

Our parish has a responsibility to enact these policies safely and with diligence. The safety of everyone in our building and ultimately our community is the most important purpose of these policies. Hence, we are not going to rush to reopen just to reopen. It may take us a few weeks to get everything in place. We want to get it right the first time so that we are the welcoming community that we are known to be. We also know that adjustments will be made as we all journey through these uncertain times.

As individuals, each one of us is committed to following in the footsteps of Christ who is our Way, the Truth and the Life. As a community of faith, we are guided by his vision of authentic life. Our faith always strengthens and nourishes us, especially in challenging times. We walk together while supporting each other. 

Thank you for your support, understanding and generosity as we work to reopen our church. We cannot do this without you. Let us pray for each other. 

Fr. Rex Pillai