Some important news for the parishioners of Sheenboro, Chapeau, and St. Joseph’s Churches:
This article explains well why it is we must keep the windows and doors open in our parish churches. None of our facilities have a ventilation system save for the parish office in Chapeau. Certainly, none of the churches’ worship spaces have any form of a system designed to clean and circulate the air. So while we all must wear masks while we’re in church (with the exception of when I celebrate from the altar), it’s necessary to keep the doors and windows open to prevent the aerosolized virus from building up and endangering people.
As someone who has to sign the cheques to pay the oil bills, I well understand the cost of going through the winter with heat literally flying out open doors and windows. But the cost of turning our celebrations into superspreader events is a great deal worse imho.
So enjoy the beautiful weather this weekend and for the next few days and soak up all the warmth from these sunny days because it’s no doubt going to become a fair bit chillier as we gather in church throughout the winter months.
On a perhaps happier note, I have succeeded so far in obtaining the assistance of another priest for Christmas Eve and am actively looking for a second one. If I succeed in this, then each parish will celebrate two Christmas Eve Masses. If I fail, then we’ll only be able to celebrate two masses (5 pm and 7 pm) in Chapeau and St. Joseph with Sheenboro having one at 8:15 pm. If we can spread out those who usually attend Mass on Christmas Eve over two Masses instead of one in the two larger buildings, we can accommodate the usual number of people as in Christmas’ past while maintaining the safe distances demanded by the COVID restrictions. Let’s let Santa take care of spreading the gifts this Christmas season and we’ll focus on keeping any illnesses or viruses out of our area. That seems like a fair way to keep everyone we love safe and in good form both physically and spiritually throughout the holidays and throughout the winter season too.