Stations of the Cross
Stations at St, Mary's have been cancelled for tonight February 19th
In follow-up to my letter of June 1, 2020, it is with great pleasure that I announce that Bishop Cote has stated Sunday Masses will resume on the weekend of July 4-5, 2020.
The Bishop also stated COVID safety and social distancing protocols must continue to be followed. Thus, wearing masks (unless you have a medical condition), social distancing of six feet between households, and limited seating will continue to be required.
Seating capacity for Mass is presently limited by two factors: (1) Governor Lamont’s Executive Order limiting seating to 25% capacity, and (2) the number of pews available due to social distancing. In some cases, the number of available seats due to social distancing will be lower than the 25% threshold. This means that, on average, we can use roughly 33% of the pews.
In light of limited seating, it is strongly recommended that you make a reservation for seating. To make a reservation, go to our website (for all three parishes at this time) stmaryjc.weconnect.com (under the tab entitled “Temporary Mass Schedule & Mass Registration”), follow to the sign-up link and enter your name and choose the number of slots for your household. One-person and two-person households will sign up for one slot; households with three or more people will sign up for two slots. If you do not have online access, please contact the main office at (860) 376-2044 and someone will make a reservation for you.
Since seating is limited, we will have to turn people away once we have reached capacity, in compliance with the Governor’s Order; thus, reservations are strongly recommended.
Please note: Due to social distancing and seating limitations, your favorite pew or favorite spot may not be available. Due to the physical arrangement of pews in a church, you may be asked to sit in a different area of the Church than you are used to. We ask for your patience and understanding while we navigate this situation.
In light of the resumption of Sunday Masses, the Monday evening Mass and the Saturday morning Masses will be canceled effective Saturday morning, July 4, 2020 (i.e., no morning Masses on July 4). In addition, the schedule of Confessions will return to its normal schedule. Also, we would like to maintain the three morning Masses reserved for people with higher-risk health conditions. The new Temporary Summer Schedule will be as follows:
Saturday (Vigil Masses for Sunday)
3:00 p.m. Confessions @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City
3:30 p.m. Confessions @ Saint Catherine Church, Preston
4:00 p.m. Vigil Mass @Saint Mary Church, Jewett City
4:30 p.m. Vigil Mass @ Saint Catherine Church, Preston
5:45 p.m. Vigil Mass @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown
8:00 a.m. Confessions @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown
8 am Mass @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City
9 am Mass @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown
10 am Mass @ Saint Catherine Church, Preston
11 am Mass @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City
8 am Mass @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown
8 am Mass @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City – RESERVED FOR PEOPLE WITH
HIGHER-RISK HEALTH CONDITIONS
7 pm Mass @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown
8 am Mass @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City
10 am Mass @ Saint Catherine Church, Preston – RESERVED FOR PEOPLE WITH HIGHER-RISK HEALTH CONDITIONS
7 pm Mass @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City
8 am Mass @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown – RESERVED FOR PEOPLE WITH HIGHER-RISK HEALTH CONDITIONS
Bishop Cote’s Dispensation from the Obligation to Attend Sunday Mass remains in effect. Thus, if you are not comfortable coming to Mass on a Sunday when there will likely be more people, you are invited to come to a Mass on a weekday instead. Also, if you have symptoms of COVID-19 or are not feeling well, please stay home and rest.
As we begin Sunday Masses once again, there will be some changes, and things may seem a bit awkward at first, but that is okay. In gathering to worship God, we will be trying to do so as safely as possible.
I look forward to seeing all of you again!
Fr. Ted Tumicki
Temporary Mass Schedule
Due to seating limitations and the continued suspension of Sunday Masses, we are temporarily adding more weekday Masses, namely on three evenings and on Saturday morning. While Bishop Cote has dispensed Catholics from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass, you are invited and encouraged to come to a daily Mass. Mass at Saint Mary’s will be in the Church and not in the Chapel. Please also note which Masses are reserved for those at higher-risk of catching COVID-19. If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or are not feeling well, please stay home. You are not expected to come to Church if you are sick.
The temporary weekday Mass schedule will be:
Monday: 8 am @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown
7 pm @ Saint Catherine Church, Preston
8 am @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City – RESERVED FOR PEOPLE WITH HIGHER-RISK HEALTH CONDICTIONS
7 pm @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown
8 am @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City
10 am @ Saint Catherine Church, Preston – RESERVED FOR PEOPLE WITH HIGHER-RISK HEALTH CONDICTIONS
7 pm @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City
8 am @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown – RESERVED FOR PEOPLE WITH HIGHER- RISK HEALTH CONDICTIONS
8 am @ Saint Mary Church, Jewett City
9 am @ Saints Thomas & Anne Church, Voluntown
10 am @ Saint Catherine Church, Preston
In order to maintain a 6 foot social distance, the number of people who can attend each Mass has to be set and monitored. If you plan on attending any Mass you must let us know by registering using the following link Mass signup at least two hours before your Mass begins,
Bishop Cote has notified us that the celebration Masses will be allowed to resume on Monday June 8th. This only applies to DAILY Mass, there will continue to be no Sunday Masses celebrated at this time. More information will be forthcoming from about Mass times and any restrictions.
Below is a link to a short video from the Diocese detailing some of the restrictions we well see initially. A couple of details presented in this video pertain to weekend Masses only--specifically, ushers being in attendance and the doors being propped open. All other information applies.
Live Streaming Masses for Holy Week and Ongoing
Choices for live streamed Masses as well as recorded Masses can be found linked to the Diocese webpage on the 'Website Links' page of our website. The options include the Holy Week Mass schedule.
SUSPENDED: Public Celebration of Mass in the Diocese of Norwich
As publicly announced on Tuesday March 17, 2020 by the Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, Bishop of Norwich, in light of the recommendations of healthcare professionals and Governor Ned Lamont’s Executive Order (No. 7D) requiring the closure of all restaurants, bars, gyms, and movie theaters and the prohibition of civic, social, and recreational gatherings of 50 people or more, including religious, spiritual, or worship gatherings of such size, the Diocese of Norwich has cancelled all weekend and weekday Masses, effective Tuesday, March 17, 2020, in the churches of the Diocese until further notice. Priests will celebrate a daily Mass with no congregation, remembering in prayer all who are affected by the pandemic. Pastors will be encouraged to make provision for their churches to be open during the day so individuals can still come and pray and make an Act of Spiritual Communion with the Lord.
Sunday Mass is commuted by doing one of the following AND making an Act of Spiritual Communion:
Select Any of the Four Devotions Below
Make an Act of Spiritual Communion
- Watching Sunday Mass on TV or online. See Televised and Streaming Mass Links in the column to the right
- Reading and reflecting upon the Scriptures for Sunday http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/031920.cfm
- Praying 5 Decades of the Rosary – the Sorrowful Mysteries being particularly suited to both the current situation and the Lenten Season; or
- Meditating on the Stations of the Cross https://www.stjotc.org/68
Mass on Radio & Television.
In light of the suspension of public Masses, everyone has the option of watching Mass on television. Each day, Mass is broadcast by the Archdiocese of Hartford’s Office of Radio & Television (ORTV). The television Mass is broadcast seven days a week. Please check local listings for times and stations.
The Mass from ORTV can also be found streaming live at 10:00 a.m. seven days a week on http://www.ortv.org/streaming/TV_Mass_stream.htm
In addition, Mass can be heard from the Cathedral of St. Patrick in Norwich on Sunday mornings at 9 a.m. on radio station WICH AM 1310.
CHANGED: Hours when the churches will be open
Although no public Masses are to celebrated during this period, the faithful should not be totally deprived of the opportunity to visit a church and pray before the Blessed Sacrament, meditate on the Stations of the Cross or to venerate particular sacred images of our Lady or the saints to whom they have particular devotion. Therefore to that end each of our churches will be open for a period of time during which parishioners can make a private visit. All three of our parishes churches will be open and available for personal, private prayer on Saturdays from 12 Noon until 6 p.m. and on Sundays from 8 a.m. until 12 Noon. St. Mary Church in Jewett City will be open daily from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m.
An Act of Spiritual Communion
What is spiritual communion? St. Thomas Aquinas described it as “an ardent desire to receive Jesus in the most holy sacrament and lovingly embrace him” at a time or in circumstances when we cannot receive him in sacramental Communion.
Sample prayers suitable for making an Act of Spiritual Communion:
by St. Alphonsus Liguori
My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally,
come at least spiritually into my heart.
I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You.
Never permit me to be separated from You.
Prayer to the Most Holy Redeemer (Anima Christi)
Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, embolden me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O good Jesus, hear me.
Within thy wounds hide me.
Never permit me to be parted from you.
From the evil Enemy defend me.
In the hour of my death call me.
and bid me come to thee,
that with your saints I may praise thee
for age upon age.
Prayer to Our Lord Jesus Christ Crucified
Behold, O good and loving Jesus, that I cast myself on my knees before you and, with the greatest fervor of spirit, I pray and beseech you to instill into my heart ardent sentiments of faith, hope and charity, with true repentance for my sins and a most firm purpose of amendment. With deep affection and sorrow I ponder intimately and contemplate in my mind your five wounds, having before my eyes what the prophet David had already put in your mouth about yourself, O good Jesus: They have pierced my hands and my feet; they have numbered all my bones (Ps. 21: 17-18).
The Prayer of Pope Francis to Mary during the Coronavirus Pandemic
O Mary, you always shine on our path as a sign of salvation and of hope. We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick, who at the cross took part in Jesus’ pain, keeping your faith firm.
You, Salvation of Your People, know what we need, and we are sure you will provide so that, as in Cana of Galilee, we may return to joy and to feasting after this time of trial.
Help us, Mother of Divine Love, to conform to the will of the Father and to do as we are told by Jesus, who has taken upon himself our sufferings and carried our sorrows to lead us, through the cross, to the joy of the resurrection. Amen.
Under your protection, we seek refuge, Holy Mother of God. Do not disdain the entreaties of we who are in trial, but deliver us from every danger, O glorious and blessed Virgin. Amen.
CHANGED: Sacrament of Reconciliation
The normally scheduled times for Confession have also changed until further notice. Pastorally it is important that the faithful not b be denied access to the Sacrament of Penance. We will hear confessions at the following locations and times:
Saint Mary - Saturdays 2:00 - 2:30; Saints Thomas & Anne - Saturdays 12:00-12:30; Saint Catherine - Sunday 11:30 - 12:00.
Every precaution should be taken to ninsure “social distancing” between priest and penitent, preferably with a screen between hthem rather than face to face. That screen should ebe sufficiently covered (e.g. filters, coverings, etc.) to create a safe barrier between the priest and penitent.
Funerals will still be permitted with a couple of different options available:
The Funeral Mass of Christian Burial may only be celebrated in private and attended by immediate family members and necessary participants, while not exceeding the limits established by the civil authorities.
Alternatively, families may choose to have a simple graveside service with immediate family members only and schedule a Memorial Mass at a later date, e.g. on the sixth month anniversary of the person’s passing.