By Fr. Paul Shovelain
This past Tuesday at our commission meetings with over 60 parish leaders we had the opportunity to share the blessings of the last year. People really appreciated the live-streaming, the “We Miss You” ministry, the yard signs, the outdoor prayer and drive through opportunities. Despite the challenges of the last year, we have been able to remain “United in the Holy Spirit!” We have been able to do it with your commitment to rely on prayer, being willing to grow and living out of a generous spirit. Thank you!
At the commission meeting, we discussed things we won’t miss. One of the things that were shared was masks. People do want a sense of normalcy and be able to see each other’s smiles. I do realize that some people want to keep the masks. Given the recent lifting of the mask mandate and in consultation with my Reopening Task Force Team, we have decided to end the mask requirement at SJB. We still recommend them, but they are not required. At Mass, those who distribute Holy Communion will wear masks for now. The governor has not lifted the mask mandate for schools so our school community will continue to wear masks until the end of the school year. It has been a trying time for all and I appreciate your patience and flexibility as we have navigated through this.
Although social distancing will no longer be required after May 28th, we will still maintain seating in every other row in the two pie sections in the church. This will allow a little more caution for those who prefer that. Masks are recommended but not required. See the information below for updated Covid protocols.
COVID Protocol Updates
Based on guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health and Center for Disease Controls, face masks are recommended, but not required, to be worn at St. John the Baptist Church.
Please note that the mask and distancing requirements for our school and our childcare program remain in effect until the end of the school year. In our school building all children, parents, visitors and staff members are expected to wear masks through the remainder of the school year.
Eucharistic Ministers of Holy Communion are also required to wear masks while distributing Holy Communion.
Beginning Friday, May 28, social distancing guidelines are no longer required. The center section and St. John the Baptist section of pews will be open seating. The pie sections of pews on either side of the church will continue to seat every other pew to maintain social distance as an option for those uncomfortable with no social distancing.