CHURCHES: NEW MANDATES!

• Because of the ongoing danger of groups gathering and the possibility of the virus spreading in this way, we are MANDATING churches to remain closed. Some parishes have already found it necessary to do this and, in light of the proximity of our parishes to each other, it is thought best to have a consistent policy in the entire diocese. THIS IS EFFECTIVE AS OF MARCH 20, 2020 at NOON.

• At this time, too, we are MANDATING parish offices to close for business in an attempt to keep people in their homes as much as possible for their own health and wellbeing. Most parish office business can be conducted by telephone. Those who can work from home should do so. THIS IS EFFECTIVE AS OF MARCH 20, 2020 at NOON. 

NET-TV can be seen in the New York City are on Spectrum (Channel 97), Optimum (Channel 30) and FIOS (Channel 48). Viewers can also tune in online at www.netny.tv.

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SCHOOLS
The elementary Catholic Academies and Parish Schools in the Diocese of Brooklyn will close next week, Monday, March 16 to Friday, March 20. Monday will be used as a professional day for teachers to develop their distance learning plans. We anticipate that beginning Tuesday, children in the Diocese of Brooklyn’s Academies and Schools will have access to online learning.

In addition, the leadership of all Catholic Academies and Parish Schools are committed to following CDC guidelines regarding deep cleaning and sanitization of buildings.
This decision is being made out of an abundance of caution due to the rapidly changing situation and after consultation with city and state agencies. Please continue to monitor your Catholic Academy and Parish School websites next week for further updates.


UPDATE FROM THE DIOCESE OF BROOKLYN  March 20TH

Sincerely, 

Most Rev. Raymond F. Chappetto, DD, VG, VE
Auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn
Vicar General
Vicar for Clergy and Consecrated Life

 UPDATE FROM THE DIOCESE OF BROOKLYN  March 13th

The faithful of the diocese are reminded that the Bishop has already issued a dispensation from the obligation to attend Mass on Sunday. The obligation to keep the Lord’s Day holy can be fulfilled by maintaining a prayerful attitude and through personal and family prayer. 

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Given the continuing and growing concern about the spread of the COVID-19 virus, Bishop DiMarzio has determined that all public masses be cancelled in the Diocese of Brooklyn beginning Monday, March 16th, until further notice. This includes weekday masses as well as Sunday. Funerals and Weddings will be permitted but should be limited to family members only. Parish baptism celebrations should be limited to family only, if they cannot be postponed. Confirmations should be celebrated with the Rite of Confirmation without Mass, if need be, and in consultation with the Bishop scheduled to celebrate the Confirmation. 

URGENT UPDATE FROM THE DIOCESE OF BROOKLYN  March 15th


RELIGIOUS EDUCATION PROGRAMS
All in-person parish religious education classes, all youth ministry classes and group meetings (including all CYO activities) and all adult faith formation sessions (including RENEW and other small faith sharing groups) will be cancelled until further notice. As previously stated, all Secretariat for Evangelization and Catechesis classes, events, workshops, and other gatherings are also canceled during this period.
The health of all the faithful of the Diocese is of utmost concern, so let us continue to pray to the Lord Who is a healer to protect us and bring about quickly an end to this present crisis.
Sincerely,

Most Rev. Raymond F. Chappetto, DD, VG, VE
Auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn
Vicar General
Vicar for Clergy and Consecrated Life

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Diocesan Churches to Ring Bells

For Coronavirus Patients, Victims And Heroes

The faithful are urged to watch the celebration of the Eucharist on TV, as well. 

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In light of the continuing crisis, the situation is being monitored carefully and updates will follow. Let us continue to pray, especially through the intercession of Our Lady of Guadalupe, for those who are sick, for medical personnel and for all people as we confront this challenge

Beginning Friday, April 3, parishes in the Brooklyn Diocese with outdoor bells are being called to ring them every day at 3 p.m. as part of a new initiative known as “Bells of Hope.”

“The ringing of the church bells will inspire us as New Yorkers and citizens of the world, of all faiths, the strongest of believers and the nonbelievers, to unite in prayer against this virus,” Bishop DiMarzio said

“As our city, and especially our boroughs, remain the epicenter of this Coronavirus pandemic, each day we will ask Almighty God to bring an end to this illness which has caused great pain and suffering for many people of the Diocese in Brooklyn and Queens,” he added.

Bishop DiMarzio’s announcement comes as the celebration of the Lord’s Resurrection and the Easter Season draw near. 

“Bishop DiMarzio has selected 3 p.m. as the daily time, to coincide with the hour of the death of the Lord and of Divine Mercy,” the diocese said in a press release.

The initiative will continue in the diocese’s 185 parishes throughout the coronavirus epidemic. Currently, all churches and rectories in the Brooklyn Diocese are closed until further notice as a preventative measure.

Masses have been suspended, and all Memorial Masses, Weddings, and baptisms are to be postponed. Confirmations and Communions have also been postponed in efforts to avoid the spread of the virus. 

 “We may or may not know for whom these bells will toll,” Bishop DiMarzio explained. “However, we will pause to honor those who are suffering, who have died, and give thanks to God for those putting their lives at risk for others.

The celebrations are scheduled as follows:

Saturday at 6 pm: Vigil pre-recorded from Immaculate Conception in Jamaica (English)

Sunday at 11 am: Live from St. James Cathedral in Downtown Brooklyn (English)

Sunday at 1:30 pm: Pre-recorded from Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph in Prospect Heights (Spanish) 

Shrine Church of Saint Jude


CHURCHES & LITURGY
In an effort to be proactive in our response to the spread of the Covid 19 Virus, Bishop DiMarzio has dispensed the faithful from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass until further notice.

Public Masses will be celebrated; however the faithful are urged to exercise caution and try to limit the numbers of persons gathered. This is in an effort to be in compliance with the State’s regulations about large public gatherings. This dispensation remains in effect until further notice.
Weekday masses, too, will continue as usual with the normal precautions people should take when gathering in public places. Other celebrations (such as weddings and funerals) may take place but attendance should be limited. Celebrations such as Confirmations, First Penance, etc. may take place but attendance should be strictly limited, perhaps including only family members. There is an option for an Order for Confirmation without Mass, if this is desired. In these extremely difficult and challenging times, our primary duty is to keep the faithful safe and healthy.

When gathering, the faithful are urged to take the necessary precautions including hand washing, remaining at a safe distance from others and other safe practices, such as the reception of Holy Communion in the hand.

Tomorrow, Friday, March 27, 2020, at 1 p.m. EST, Pope Francis will offer prayers and an extraordinary “Urbi et Orbi” Blessing for the world’s Catholics. The Holy Father stated, “I invite everyone to participate spiritually through the means of communication.”

Live coverage begins on NET-TV at 12:45 pm. The coverage includes reflection from the Most Reverend Nicholas DiMarzio, Bishop of Brooklyn, on the significance of this Papal blessing and what it means for us.

 NET-TV can be seen in the New York City area on Spectrum (Channel 97), Optimum (Channel 30), and FIOS (Channel 48).  

 
We are blessed by your commitment to our faith community.  To that end, I would ask each of you to share the                       

with family and friends. We need to be able to reach out to everyone in our community. It is more important than ever for us to help one another. We are trying to gather contact information so that we can help each other and pray with each other in this time of need.

I would also ask you to consider remembering your parish at this time.  Below is a link for those of you that are able to continue to support your parish in its ministry.

Sincerely, 

Most Rev. Raymond F. Chappetto, DD, VG, VE
Auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn
Vicar General
Vicar for Clergy and Consecrated Life