Parish Newsletter - May 2, 2020
Dear St. Patrick Family,

Happy Easter! Jesus Christ is Risen!!! 

I hope that you and your families are doing well during these unique times. We have not been able to gather at our Church for Mass for over a month now. As you know Governor Abbot issued a decree on Monday allowing for the opening of Churches beginning May 1 under certain conditions. 

On Thursday, April 30, our Bishop, Joe Vásquez, invited us to begin offering Mass again beginning Tuesday, May 5, as long as we follow safety guidelines given by our civil
authorities. This is very exciting! I look forward to seeing you again and for you to be able to receive Jesus in the Eucharist! 

The weekend of May 9 & 10, Mother’s Day weekend, will be our first Sunday Masses together.   However, for us to gather safely we will have to prepare well. Our Parish Staff, Leadership Team, Liturgy Team and other key leaders will be reviewing the details of the safety protocols and will let you know about those before Sunday Mass on May 9 & 10.  
Meanwhile, I would like to give you a few updates on what we are doing to prepare for the next stages of this journey during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

1.      Mass online: we are purchasing and installing video equipment so that we can continue to livestream Mass and make it even better. 
2.      Cleaning: all the chairs in the building will have been disinfected by May 8.
3.      Church Seats: All seats in the Church will be covered with plastic temporarily so that they can be easily cleaned after each Mass. Only every other row will be available for seating.
4.      Office: Our staff have continued to work from home (except Brenda and her volunteers who are cleaning). Please call or email us if you need anything. 
5.      Divine Mercy Image: Some parishioners donated an image of Divine Mercy to be placed above the St. Patrick Statue – the building was designed for this. Before Mass on Mother’s Day, we hope to have it in place. 

Thank you for your patience, your continued prayer and your generosity during this time. 

During this month of May, I ask you to join me and the rest of the worldwide Church to seek Mary’s intercession by praying the Rosary daily. Mary delights in leading us to her son, Jesus, through this time-tested and fruitful devotion. I pray it each night on Facebook – when the technology cooperates – at 7:30pm. Join me then or pray with your family. As we ease back into our Sunday gathering, prayer keeps us united.

Our St. Vincent de Paul Society stands ready to help anyone who is in need, particularly with utility bills. Please call the parish office and leave a message so that our SVDP team can contact you.

If you would like to talk about something or pray for or about something, please email me at pastor@stpatrickhutto.org .

To Better Connection in Christ Jesus,
Fr. Brian Eilers

Temporary Protocols For Attending Mass:
  
  Do NOT attend Mass if…
a.       You are sick
b.       You are 65 or older
c.       You have been advised by healthcare workers or caregivers not to attend Mass
d.       You sincerely believe attending Mass will jeopardize your health or those of your household
e.       You sincerely believe that because of limitations imposed by the temporary protocols attending
Mass is not reasonable.

  1.   Safe Distancing (6ft) – at Church please maintain 6ft between you and non-household members
  2.   Mass online – we will continue to stream Mass in English & Spanish on Facebook, our website and Vimeo
  3.  Hand Sanitizer – this will be available at all entrances – please use it when entering the Church
  4. Facemasks – please wear them
  5. Seats – will be covered with plastic so that they can be easily disinfected after each Mass
  6. Ushers – will be trained to facilitate these safety protocols.
  7. Other Protocols we are working on include: collection, entry and exit logistics, cry room, communion lines, etc
  8. These protocols will continue until further notice.
LETTER OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS to the Faithful for the Month of May 2020
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
The month of May is approaching, a time when the People of God express with particular intensity their love and devotion for the Blessed Virgin Mary. It is traditional in this month to pray the Rosary at home within the family. The restrictions of the pandemic have made us come to appreciate all the more this “family” aspect, also from a spiritual point of view.
 
For this reason, I want to encourage everyone to rediscover the beauty of praying the Rosary at home in the month of May. This can be done either as a group or individually; you can decide according to your own situations, making the most of both opportunities. The key to doing this is always simplicity, and it is easy also on the internet to find good models of prayers to follow.
 
I am also providing two prayers to Our Lady that you can recite at the end of the Rosary, and that I myself will pray in the month of May, in spiritual union with all of you. I include them with this letter so that they are available to everyone.

page on our website

Prepare - Participate - Process

Each week - follow the guidelines to help your family get the most out of attending mass in your home. It includes activities for families with children. Attending mass with your family at Home.

Link to St. Patrick Sunday Mass on Facebook or on the home page of our Website

Other helpful Mass tools:
Neighborhood Good News!

All parishioners have been grouped together in neighborhoods.

You should have been contacted by the Leader of your neighborhood, just to touch base with you and your family.

Our Neighborhood Group Leaders have done an amazing job. Everyday I hear stories of connections that have been made. Some people did not know that they had so many Catholic neighbors. In one neighborhood, two families connected and realized that they both have connections to New York, similar work histories and much more. If someone calls you on behalf of the parish, they will not ask for money; they may ask for prayers!

Ways to Stay connected to the parish news:
BE LIGHT - Witness to Love

A Marriage Renewal Date Night Series

Each date night session will be released at 7pm CST each evening of the series. Once the session is released, registered participants will have ongoing access to the Be Light course through the WTL web based app.  
 
Pre-recorded sessions may be accessed at any point after the release date and time so you could spread the 5 date nights out over 5 weeks. 
 
Each session consists of a 12-14 minute video, 3 discussion questions and recommended resources from the presenters for couples to utilize beyond the date night.

Instead of a Zoom Happy Hour, I invite you to have a Zoom double date or triple date – invite some other couples to watch the video with you and enjoy some quality time using the 3 questions that are provided.
Parish Family Rosary

When : Every night at 7:30pm
Where : Facebook - click here
How to join : email Jill Hartman

The Rosary helps us pray with the most important moments of Jesus' life. Mary, our spiritual mother in Heaven, loves to lead us to know Jesus better. Join us and see how this happens.
I'd like to help others...

St. Vincent De Paul Society
  • helps families who call us
  • usually with Utility payments
  • to help give to SVDP

Hutto Food Pantry
  • groceries for families
  • Every Saturday
  • 206 E Live Oak St
  • leave food in the Chapel
  • give a financial gift

Debt Reduction/ Matching Grant from Diocese of Austin
St. Patrick is a relatively young parish and we continue to pay on the debt for our current facilities. In order to assist our parish, the Diocese of Austin has been matching our payments toward our loan principle. To date we have paid about $700,000 which has been matched; our debt has been reduced from over $4.6 million to about $3.2 million. This is great news! However, the Diocese recently informed us that due to the current crisis, they have to suspend this match temporarily in order to help parishes in need. Together we hope that when things are back to what we might call normal, the diocese will be able to resume the matching grant toward loan principle. Therefore, all donations our parish receives toward debt reduction will be held in a parish account until the diocese resumes the matching grant. At that point, all funds for debt reduction will be applied toward the loan principle.  If you have any questions regarding this, please email me: pastor@stpatrickhutto.org



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