The weekly Mass schedule is as follows and is set to allow for cleaning between each Mass:
Saturday - 4 PM Vigil
Sunday - 8 AM, 9:30 AM, 11:30 AM, 5:30 PM
Monday-Friday at 8 AM
The church will be open for private reflection Monday-Friday following 8 AM Mass - Noon
The parish offices are open Mon-Fri from 8:30 AM - 2:30 PM. Small group meetings are not yet allowed.
COVID-19 Mid-summer Reminders
- Masks are required at all events. Masks are not used by children under the age of two, and for children between the ages of two and five they are used at the discretion of the parent. Except in the case of an exemption for medical reasons, all other people are required to wear masks at church events, whether inside or outside, on parish grounds.
- Social distancing is necessary, and the standard remains six feet.
- Communion on the tongue is not allowed.
- All priests, deacons, staff members and volunteers assisting at Mass must have their temperatures taken with the non-touch thermometer before they come into the church. Anyone with a temperature above 100 degrees should not come into the church.
- Small groups – prayer groups, Bible studies, twelve step programs, youth ministry activities – are still not allowed face to face.
- Priests, deacons, and lay ministers are allowed to assist at wake services only outside of the normal announced hours of the wake, and only with the immediate family present.
- Funeral Masses may be held, with all of the same protocols as for regular Masses being strictly observed.
- Baptisms can happen, with masks and social distancing.
- First Communions can happen, with all of the same protocols as for regular Masses.
- Confirmations can happen, and should be arranged with the Regional Bishop or Episcopal Vicar.
- The completion of the Sacraments of Initiation for people who would have been received into the Church at the Easter Vigil of 2020 can happen, with authorization from the Regional Bishop or Episcopal Vicar.
- Weddings can happen, with masks and social distancing being strictly observed (although since the couple will now presumably be a household, they do not to wear masks or preserve social distancing when they are the only ones in an area). Photography sessions in the church are probably not manageable.
- Regular Communion calls are not allowed. Visits may be made in danger of death, with all of the appropriate protections in place.
- Altar servers are still not allowed.
- Congregational singing is still not allowed.
- Spaces must still be cleaned between uses.
Guide for Attending Mass at St. Augustine Church
We depend on and appreciate everyone’s patience, cooperation, compliance and good humor to ensure that we may continue to worship safely together and in person. These procedures proceed from the guidelines given by the Commonwealth and the Archdiocese and are for our own safety:
- Cardinal Seán has dispensed from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass until otherwise announced. Anyone who does not feel it is safe to venture to church is NOT expected to do so and they are encouraged to participate in Mass on television or via the Internet. Everyone’s prayerful support is precious.
- Enter the parking lot from Essex St. only. Do NOT turn around but pull ALL the way forward toward Pearson St.
- Enter the church by way of the ramp door. The church will be open 20 minutes before the scheduled Mass time. Our capacity is restricted to 80 spaces. When our limit has been reached no one else will be permitted to enter.
- Before you leave home, wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds. We suggest you bring personal-sized hand sanitizer to church with you.
- Face masks must be worn at ALL times. Have your mask on when you leave your vehicle and keep it on until you return to your vehicle.
- Everyone enters by the ramp door and proceeds down the center aisle to the designated seats. Church Guides will direct you to the center aisle where you are to place your offertory contribution in the basket and then follow the Church Guide’s direction to the designated seat. Designated pews are marked with green tape on the ends and designated seats have been marked with a green cross. Seating will begin with the front of the church. Aisles are one-way: the center aisle moves to the altar, the side aisles move away from the altar.
- We are to maintain social distancing at all times, keeping a 6-foot distance between each person at all times. Measuring lines are painted on the church sidewalk. In the aisles of the church the distance between each yellow pew marker is 6 feet.
- There will be no processions; no congregational singing; no hymnals; no passing of the collection baskets. The greeting of peace will be with a friendly wave.
- See updated guidelines for reception of Holy Communion (including low-gluten host) below...
- After the final blessing, we leave by way of the side aisles only. One row at a time will be called to exit, beginning with the rear of the church. Those seated on the right side will leave by the ramp door. Those seated on the left side may leave by the front doors or the ramp door. All proceed directly to their vehicles while maintaining social distancing.
Guidelines for Reception of Holy Communion
Anyone who is approved to receive Holy Communion with a low-gluten host is asked to bring their personal host with them in a Communion pyx. A pyx should have been provided for you when you first received permission from the Archdiocese. If not, please contact Sr. Madonna and she will provide you with a pyx. Securely put your name on the pyx. When you arrive at church place your pyx on the gold tray which will be on the left side of the altar.
Holy Communion will be distributed this way:
- At Communion time the Church Guides will direct people to begin coming forward via the center aisle, one pew at a time, beginning at the front, alternating left side/right side, and maintaining social distancing by taking note of the green markings on the ends of the pews
- Approach the priest/deacon with your mask on and your hands cupped one in the other and held at the level of one's heart.
- The priest/deacon will present the host saying, "The Body of Christ" to which you respond, "Amen"
- The priest/deacon will place the host in your hand; gently close your hand and walk to the green square to your right or left, which is placed to facilitate proper respect for the Eucharist AND safety for those gathered
- Stop in the green square; remove your mask; consume the host; replace your mask.
- Walk back by way of the side aisle to your seat.
For low-gluten Communicants
- Approach the priest/deacon with hands folded and say, "Low-Gluten Communion."
- The priest/deacon will gesture toward the altar and say, "the Body of Christ." to which you respond, "Amen" and then
- Go up the steps to the left side of the altar.
- Retrieve your own pyx; open it and consume the host there at the left side of the altar.
- Take your empty pyx with you and return to your seat by the side aisle, respecting social distancing as usual.
The Church Guides will receive Holy Communion last.
Call for Volunteers
We have created a new ministry called Church Guides who will be present at each Mass to help our parishioners safely worship together. They will take on various roles such as guiding people to their seats, helping to maintain social distancing, addressing questions and concerns, and helping people to understand the direction of movement before, during, and at the end of Mass. We need guides for each of the Masses as follows: Saturday - 4pm, Sunday at 8am, 10am and 12pm. Please contact Sr. Madonna, if you are interested in volunteering at email@example.com.
While We Prepare
Not everyone will be comfortable returning to Mass in the church, therefore:
- The obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holydays of Obligation will continue to be suspended for the foreseeable future.
- We live-stream Mass to our website on some weekdays and at select Masses most weekends (access link and schedule here). The quality of this stream is partially dependent on facebook itself (high demand) as well as our equipment. The purchase of a professional streaming package is currently not a priority in the parish budget so if the quality of the broadcast is most important to you, please check out Catholic TV (Comcast 268, Verizon 296) EWTN which are filmed in a professional studio.
St. Augustine Parishioners ROCK!! Your continued support via mail or online has been greatly appreciated and important for us to be able to continue to minister to our community. We have had many new signups for one-time and recurring donations.
If you would like to sign up to donate online, there are three secure options to make donations online:
securely and directly by credit card for one-time or recurring monthly donations - click on button below:
To set up recurring regular offertory electronically, visit our Online Giving site.
Through the Archdiocesan 90 Days Now - For Your Parish program - donate daily by credit card for 90 days, click here to access the form