ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE SACRAMENTS AND LITURGICAL CELEBRATIONS TO REDUCE THE RISKS OF COVID-19 CORONAVIRUS TRANSMISSION.
The Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, having consulted the Ordinaries of the Dioceses, has agreed that the cessation of public liturgies should begin from Friday evening 20th March 2020. Because of the situation the Church finds herself in, the obligation for the faithful to attend Holy Mass on a Sunday or Holy day of Obligation is removed, until further notice.
Celebration of Holy Mass
Mass will be celebrated in the parish without the faithful.
Masses for individual intentions will still be said and where possible listed on the Website and/or the Newsletter.
“The continuing celebration of Mass ensures that the faithful can join in spiritual communion with the priests of the Church. The Catechism of the Catholic Church states (1364): As often as the sacrifice of the Cross by which 'Christ our Pasch has been sacrificed' is celebrated on the altar, the work of our redemption is carried out.”
(Decree 18.03.20, Diocese of Leeds)
Baptisms are be deferred until such time that the public health advice is that congregations can gather safely. In a case of necessity
(danger of death), a baptism will be celebrated with all the hygiene precautions that have been laid down by the Church in its COVID-19 advice.
Sacrament of Reconciliation
Confession may be offered on request as long as hygiene and social distancing requirements are observed.
First Reconciliation, First Holy Communion & Confirmation
These celebrations are deferred until such time that the public health advice is that congregations can resume public worship that allows for families and friends to gather safely within our parish.
Anointing of the Sick
There will be no pastoral visits to people who are self-isolating until the isolation period ends, please phone the parish office on 0113 2490429 for advice.
Forth coming weddings at St Nicholas and Our Lady of Good Counsel
Where possible, the celebration of the sacrament of Matrimony will be deferred until such time that people can gather in numbers safely.
However, if this is not possible and only in the most pressing of circumstances, then the marriage may take place if you are willing to restrict those present as agreed with the celebrant (Priest).
Funerals will still take place, however, from Friday 20th March 2020 and until further notice the funeral service will take place at the graveside or at a crematorium, subject to the conditions laid down by the cemetery or crematorium authorities. We will make arrangements for a Mass to be celebrated in memoriam at a time in due course when congregations are allowed to gather.
On Friday 19th March 2020, the Apostolic Penitentiary published a Decree granting special Indulgences to the sick, to their caregivers, friends and family, and those who assist them by their prayers during the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic.
The head of the Apostolic Penitentiary, His Eminence Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, gave the context for the publication of the Decree: “We are living in a situation of emergency: there are hospitals that are at risk of not being able to receive the sick; there are sick people who are forced to live in isolation, and sadly, even to die without the comfort and closeness of their loved ones; there are sick people who are lacking the closeness of a priest for the Anointing of the Sick and for Confession. There are very many people in quarantine, and entire cities in which the population remains closed up in their homes because of the norms issued by the authorities to contain the contagion.”
The Decree offers a plenary indulgence to:
all people suffering from the virus who are in hospitals or quarantined at home.
It is also offered, under the same conditions, to healthcare workers, family members, and caregivers.
Furthermore, an indulgence is also offered to all those who, during this pandemic, pray for it to end, pray for those who are suffering, and (pray) for those whom the Lord has called to Himself. The provisions of the Decree also extend to all the sick, because all those who are hospitalised today are experiencing, in one way or another, the consequences of the emergency on account of the pandemic.
The conditions for receiving the grant of the indulgence are very simple. Cardinal Piacenza says that:
The sick and their caregivers are asked to unite themselves spiritually, wherever possible through the media, to the celebration of the Mass or the recitation of the Rosary or the Stations of the Cross or other forms of devotion.
If this is not possible, they are asked to recite the Creed, the Lord's Prayer, and an invocation to Mary.
All others, those who offer prayers for the souls of the dead, for those who suffer, and plead for an end to the pandemic are asked, where possible, to … read the Holy Scriptures for at least half an hour, or recite the Rosary or the Way of the Cross. As is evident to all, the recitation of prayers and the reading of the Bible can be done without leaving home, and therefore in full compliance with the rules to counter the spread of contagion.”
Those who are close to death and are not able to receive the Anointing of the Sick, or to confess, or to receive Viaticum, are entrusted to Divine Mercy. The plenary indulgence is granted to each of them, provided that they are duly disposed and have regularly recited some prayer during their lifetime (in this case the Church makes up for the three usual conditions required).