"Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise. Give thanks to him, bless his name." --Psalm 100:4

Coronavirus/COVID 19 News & Information

This page contains information from St. Anne's School and Church regarding the coronavirus/COVID-19 impact on our parish and community. The most recent information will be placed at the top of the page.


07.30.20 Message From Fr. Shofner

I’ve been thinking for the past few weeks how much I’m missing the opportunity to greet all of you after Masses.  It’s not the same to have our congregation leave the church without at least a simple “Good morning” or “Good afternoon”.  Hopefully, we’ll see an end to our restrictions soon so that we can readjust our liturgical practices to what we’re more accustomed to.   


Our first weekend of Masses with the statewide mask mandate this past weekend went well.  Looking out at the congregation, I believe we had close to 100% participation, if not full participation.  I know it’s a sacrifice for many to wear their masks for various reasons, but I appreciate you for doing so and helping to slow the spread of the virus.   

 

A reminder that there is no longer a need to sign up online for weekend Masses.  We dispensed with that after noting that our attendance was manageable enough to ensure adequate seating for everyone who attends, even with observing some distance.  We do ask, however, that you check in with an usher when you arrive for Mass.  Once the fall arrives, when attendance traditionally increases once again, we may have to reconsider reinstating the sign-ups.  


07.24.20 Message from Fr. Shofner

We are so grateful that we have been able to celebrate Masses at St. Anne's these past weeks, even if we've had to adapt a number of things we're used to. As we move forward in our celebration of the Holy Mass, here are a few notes to keep in mind regarding some important changes taking place:

1) We are no longer requiring online sign-ups prior to Mass. Our numbers have been manageable enough to ensure sufficient seating, even with appropriate distancing. However, we do ask that all those in attendance check in with our ushers when you arrive. Once the fall arrives, we may have to reinstate the sign-ups, since our Mass attendance traditionally increases in the fall.

2) In accordance with Governor Walz's statewide mask mandate beginning Saturday, July 25, we are asking that all in attendance at Masses wear a mask. Masks will be available at the entrances if you don't have one. There are exemptions for young children, those with anxiety, respiratory illness, or other physical or mental conditions that make wearing a mask difficult or impossible. Please be mindful of the mandate, as it helps to ensure the health and safety of you, your family and those around you, and may help to speed up our return to a normal celebration of the Mass. Thank you.

God bless you all as we enter into this hot weekend!


07.16.2020- Message from Father Shofner

During the past few weeks, I’ve had the chance to observe attendance patterns at Masses.  Numbers are quite manageable at this time to maintain proper social distancing with plenty of seats available for those who haven’t signed up.  So I decided to do away with the sign-up process beginning with Masses next weekend (July 25-26), to last through the remainder of the summer.  While you won’t need to sign up, I still ask that you check in with our ushers when you arrive in order to be seated.  It allows us to continue to monitor our attendance and adapt according to the need, if necessary.  If distancing restrictions remain in place this fall, when Mass attendance typically increases once again, then we may have to reinstate the sign-ups in order to ensure proper seating for everyone.  We will communicate to you at that time. 

Please note that we continue to livestream our 5:15 PM Saturday Mass on St. Anne’s Parish Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/stannescatholicchurchlesueur/, which can be accessed anytime after.  Also, the Mass will be uploaded to our parish YouTube page for viewing (search “St. Anne’s Catholic Church Le Sueur”). 

 



UPDATE:

Reminder for those who signed up for the 3 week Lenten Study, Uniformity With God's Will-

It's still going on, but it will be online through a Zoom meeting.  Those who have signed up should have received a link to the meeting site.  Anyone else who would like to join is welcome, but they need to send Fr. Shofner an email before 1:00 pm March 22nd so he can send a link.  The study will take place for 3 Sundays - March 22, March 29, April 5 - 6:30-8:00 pm each night. Father Shofner's email is [email protected]

 


All the faithful throughout the Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis are invited and encouraged to take part the "Litany in Time of Need", a beautiful prayer that brings peace in this trying time.  Tune in to Relevant Radio at 1330AM or www.relevantradio.com, where the litany will be broadcast every day at 11:00 am.  

 

A Youtube video from Archbishop Hebda regarding this prayer can be found here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=28D2kLV4da0


Suspension of Public Masses

Letter to the Faithful from Archbishop Bernard A. Hebda: 

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

State Officials have communicated to religious leaders that the next two weeks are critical for the containment of the COVID-19/coronavirus and that all congregational gatherings should be avoided. While I am sure that the advice is startling for those of any creed, it particularly hits hard for Catholics, given our beliefs about the Mass and the Eucharist.

In light of that advice, after consulting with the Presbyteral Council and College of Consultors, and having learned that an active parish priest in another U.S. diocese has tested positive for the virus – unknowingly putting his parish at risk prior to the manifestation of any symptoms – I have made the difficult decision to suspend all regularly scheduled public celebrations of Mass in the Archdiocese of Saint Paul Minneapolis, effective immediately. Given both the moral impossibility of attending Mass, as well as the dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass that was extended to the faithful of the Archdiocese last week, please rest assured that the missing of Mass in these conditions should not weigh on your conscience.

Anticipating that the need might arise for a funeral or wedding Mass in this period, a limited exception has been granted for those liturgies, provided that any liturgical celebration would comply with the directives that will be issued in a memorandum to clergy of the Archdiocese.

It pains my heart to have to make this decision since I know how many of you deeply love the Mass as I do. This decision will be re-evaluated in two weeks’ time in light of any local developments and the latest advice of civil authorities and experts.

The priests of the Archdiocese will gratefully continue to offer Masses daily for the good of the faithful and for an end to this health crisis. While unable to attend in person, the faithful are encouraged to be spiritually united with the priest celebrants as they pray for the strengthening of this local Church. I am grateful that many parishes have already found ways to broadcast the Mass and other spiritual devotions online, over the radio, or on TV, allowing the faithful to be remotely present at Mass in these challenging times and to make a spiritual communion. Options for Mass and prayer resources may be found at archspm.org/covid19.

Moreover, in their inspiring desire to serve, the priests of the Archdiocese are committed during the next two weeks to continue exploring with the lay faithful possibilities for limited public celebrations of the Mass at the parish or at the Archdiocesan level that would respect the most up-to-date recommendations from the Department of Health and allow us to continue to do our part to stop the spread of COVID-19/coronavirus in our community. Knowing that so many Catholics are deeply Eucharistic in their spirituality, our priests and deacons are also committed to expanding possibilities for adoration and private prayer, moving adoration, where necessary, to larger church spaces to facilitate appropriate social distancing.

I am grateful that confessions will continue to be heard at parishes, with appropriate precautions and adaptations taken in accordance with the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control. Priests will also continue to respond to sacramental emergencies and provide anointing and Viaticum to the extent this is possible. Please do not hesitate to contact your local parish to make them aware of any sacramental needs for the sick or the dying.

As we today mark a special day of fasting, abstinence and prayer invoking God’s Providential care for our Archdiocese, our country and the world, I invite you to consider the upcoming “fast” from the Eucharist as a way to draw ever closer to our Lord, especially as we experience a more intense longing for Jesus, present in the Eucharist. During this time of Eucharistic fasting, I would encourage each of us to offer intercessory prayer each day for the health and safety of our community, especially healthcare workers, and to join in solidarity with the many Catholics throughout the world who regularly are unable to receive communion, due to persecution or to an absence of priests.

Please continue to pray for those who have died from COVID-19/coronavirus, those who mourn them, those who are sick and the many who care for them. I ask you to keep in your prayers, as well, Governor Tim Walz and Commissioner Jan Malcom from the Minnesota Department of Health, and all public servants working to keep our communities safe.

May Mary, Consoler of the Afflicted, keep us close to each other and to the loving heart of her son.


All the faithful throughout the Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis are invited and encouraged to take part the "Litany in Time of Need", a beautiful prayer that brings peace in this trying time.  Tune in to Relevant Radio at 1330AM or www.relevantradio.com, where the litany will be broadcast every day at 11:00 am.  


Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As we are all well-aware, the COVID-19/coronavirus is spreading quickly across many nations throughout the world – it is a respiratory infection with flu-like symptoms. The United States has seen more and more states reporting their first cases, with some states experiencing deaths. Minnesota recently reported its first two cases in the Metro area, and more are expected to come as the level of contact with others is discovered. While this is a concern for many, there are things that we can do to minimize our risk of contracting the disease. Archbishop Hebda recently offered some guidelines for the Mass that we will begin implementing immediately beginning this weekend, until such time that state officials report that the major risk has passed. While the risk of exposure is low at this time, these are still prudent guidelines to follow whether we’re talking about this particular disease or the common flu or cold that affects our community throughout the year.

1) You are encouraged to stay home from Mass if you feel sick or have flu-like symptoms. The Sunday obligation is lifted if you are ill or are caring for someone who is sick. While we may want to battle through an illness for the sake of observing our obligation, it may put others at risk whose immune systems are not as equipped to deal with such an illness (the elderly or very young, for example).

2) We will empty the holy water fonts at the entrances of the church. (Please note that holy water will still be available at the Sacred Heart/Immaculate Heart nook if you would like to bring a bottle to fill
and take home.)

3) We will suspend the Sign of Peace during Masses and refrain from shaking hands prior to Masses.

4) We encourage you to refrain from hand-holding during the Our Father.

5) Extraordinary Ministers will continue to wash and sanitize their hands prior to and after the distribution of Holy Communion (this is not something new – they have already been doing this).

6) We will not offer the chalice to our Extraordinary Ministers.

7) Anti-bacterial hand sanitizer is present at the entrances of church so that you can sanitize your hands when you enter and leave church.

I understand that this seems like a lot of change for the time being, but we want to
be prudent in keeping our community as healthy as possible. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. Please continue to pray for all those throughout the world who have died, for those who are sick, and for those
who are caring for them.

God bless,
Fr. Chris Shofner


Message from Emily Sunderman, Director of Faith Formation: 

St. Anne's Faith Formation Classes and Come To The Table Meal are cancelled for Wednesday, March 18th. Families, please continue to check your email for updates today and tomorrow. Thank you!






 


Click HERE for the full letter from Archbishop Hebda regarding Mass Disensation due to coronavirus