Dear Parishioners of St. Mary of the Lake:
Thanks for your patience and care for one another during this pandemic. Your cooperation with the protocols has enabled us to continue the ministry of the Church during these difficult days. Our parish protocols have evolved to meet the requirements of state and federal agencies and the recommendations of the archdiocese. Christian charity has been our guiding principle. Charity continues to guide us as we react to the most recent announcements on masks and social distancing from the CDC and Governor Tim Walz. After considering the Governor’s executive orders, the information from the CDC and the MN Department of Health, the guidance of the archdiocese, and the comments of the Parish Leadership Council and parish staff, I have made the following decisions regarding protocols at the church and the Parish Life Center at St. Mary of the Lake. I would be very grateful for your cooperation with these protocols as we welcome more and more people back to the church. Peace, Fr. Talbot
Masks: We will continue to require masks for attending WEEKEND MASSES until at least July 1. The two main reasons for wearing masks are to protect our unvaccinated young people and to promote congregational singing. Those who do not want to wear a mask are invited to sit outside on the Bald Eagle Avenue side of church and listen to Mass over the speaker. Communion will be brought to you outside. We do not require masks for attending DAILY MASS at St. Mary of the Lake, because we do not sing and young people do not normally attend. However, people not vaccinated are strongly encouraged to wear a mask inside the church building and those preferring to wear a mask are welcome to do so.
Social Distancing: Those who attend Mass at St. Mary of the Lake are required to observe a six feet distance between you and those of a different household. The social distancing requirement continues until May 28, 2021, according to the state of Minnesota.
On-line sign-ups for weekend Masses: Based on the social distancing requirement, those who want to attend Mass in person on the weekend of May 22-23, 2021 will be required to register online or by calling the parish office. This will be the last weekend for online signup. You are not required to sign up online if you will be listening to Mass outside this weekend.
PARISH LIFE CENTER/SCHOOL BUILDING
The Commissioner for the MN Department of Health announced that safety protocols for schools (including the wearing of masks) will not change prior to the conclusion of the current school year. Because the St. Mary of the Lake Parish Life Center houses Frassati Catholic Academy, we will continue to follow the safely plan of the school, including the requirement that masks to be worn by all who visit the Parish Life Center/School building. We will follow the school safety plan in the Parish Life Center until June 3, 2021, which will be the first day of summer break for Frassati.