The Church will be re-opening for Public Mass on Monday 29th 2020
Fr. Piaras will stop saying Mass privately on the web. Mass times will return to the same as before the lockdown, that is, Monday to Friday 10am, Saturday 6.30pm and Sunday 10.30am and 12.00pm. The Church will continue to be open for private prayer Monday to Friday after 10am Mass till 12.00pm
Welcome to the website of St Matthew’s Parish, Ballyfermot. We hope you will find any information that you may require on our site, but should you need any help, please don’t hesitate to contact us in the Parish Office.
As you are probably aware, we have installed a webcam to allow parishioners and others to view our celebration of the Eucharist and other services in St. Matthews. If you would like to see the webcam, you’ll find a link in the menu above, or else just click here!
We are very happy that we can now to re-open the Church for public Mass. This will involve necessary restrictions. Already people are aware of many of these practices which we would ask everyone to respect. They include measures like hygiene and social distancing, e.g. wearing your own facemasks. Here I will give an account of the decisions that I have made and put in place with the assistance of the parish pastoral council and others to whom I am very grateful.
The obligation to attend Mass on a Sunday does not apply during these times of the pandemic and those who are vulnerable or who have been in touch with those affected by the virus should not attend. Elderly people who feel they want to attend might choose to come on a weekday when fewer are expected to attend. On Sundays Entry only will be by the front doors and Exit only by the back doors. Exception will be made for those in wheelchairs. Toilets will be open, but those who use them will be expected to use hand sanitisers and clean the toilet furnishings after use. Only priest and sacristan will be allowed in the sacristy at Mass-times. Those wanting to see them will have to observe social distancing outside the sacristy. There is no problem about having babies baptised at this time.
We will have stewards to direct people at the front doors, at the collection baskets which will be at the Altar, and to direct people when leaving the Church. We would ask people not to gather around outside after leaving the Church. Holy Communion will be brought to the people in their seats and they may receive only in the hand. We would like to facilitate those who do not attend Mass but follow it on the website. So, they should let us know if they wish Holy Communion to be brought to them. The usual number of Ministers of the Eucharist and one Minister of the Word will be required at all Masses. Ministers of the Eucharist will wear facemasks and they will sanitise their hands both before and after receiving Holy Communion. We won’t have any singing as it is said that it is worse than talking for emitting virus droplets but a bit of music would be appreciated to help people to pray. More problematic will be the cleaning of the Church, as this will need to be done after all Masses and more help would be appreciated. Mass will start with the priest alone processing in.
Notice from the Archbishop
Dear Father, Dear parishioners,
The weeks since the imposition of lockdown have been difficult weeks. We have had to impose severe restrictions on Church life that have caused suffering for all of us. Our parishes have however reacted in so many creative ways to animate Church life within the experience of lockdown and bring comfort to people. I thank all our parishes for what they have done.
Now we face a new stage. Our response has to be based on the same two actions: strict adherence to the norms of public health and renewed creativity as we embrace the congregations with renewed enthusiasm. The framework document for a Return to the Public Celebration of Mass and the Sacraments approved by the Irish Episcopal Conference is an important road map on that path….
Opening doors once again is just one step in the challenge of renewal. We face many new challenges and opportunities and I believe that we have learned many lessons during this lockdown which will help us face the future with hope.
+ Diarmuid Martin
9th June 2020.
Covid 19 Funeral Arrangements in St Matthews Church (These to be changed).
We offer our condolences to all those who are mourning the loss of a loved one at this time. We understand that this is a difficult time for you. We do not wish to make it any more difficult for you. However, to safeguard the wellbeing of all who attend the funeral in St Matthew’s Church we ask everyone to respect certain arrangements.
If you arrive before the hearse, do not gather outside the Church. On arrival enter through the front door of the Church and take your seats.
All we can allow in the Church at the moment are 70people. So sit only in the places where there is a yellow marker. (We have installed outdoor microphones so that those who are outside can follow the Mass, but they must observe social distancing.)
Leave the front seats available for the chief mourners who will arrive with the hearse.
Those who are doing readings or bringing up symbols (mementos) of the deceased should sit at the end of seats so that they do not have to pass anyone on leaving their seats.
For the distribution of Holy Communion everyone should stay where they are and Holy Communion will be brought to you.
At the end of Mass the priest and coffin will go out first, and then starting from the seats nearest the Altar, people will leave the Church by the same door by which they entered. So stay in your seat until the people in the seat in front of you have moved 2 meters past you.
Transmission of the ceremony through our website will continue until the singer has finished her singing.
Move away from the Church when you come out. Social distancing will not allow people gathering in front of the Church.
We would be very grateful if people would co-operate with the stewarding and follow these necessary arrangements.
GOOD NEWS ABOUT CONFIRMATION
Some parents have been asking about when the confirmations which were to take place earlier this year are to take place. I was hesitant about fixing dates until I was sure that we would be able to go ahead. The dates have now been decided and letters or emails have been sent out to inform those families involved. In case anyone hasn’t received this information I would be grateful to those who have if they would pass on the dates. Confirmation will take place for Ms Beirne and Ms Keane’s classes in Queen of Angels N.S.1 on Wednesday 5th August, Mr Brennan’s class in Queen of Angels N.S.2 on Tuesday 11th August, Ms Styne’s class in St Louise’s N.S. on Thursday 6th August, and Ms Dowling’s class in St Louise’s N.S. on Thursday 13th August. All at 11.30am. Unfortunately, we can only accommodate two adults with each child at the confirmation ceremony. If both parents wish to come one of them may stand in for the sponsor. There will be a practice the night before each confirmation at 7pm and those to be confirmed the following day must attend along with one responsible adult. Due to the present circumstances the Archbishop has given me the faculties to do the Confirmations myself. With everyone’s prayers and cooperation, I will do my best to help those being confirmed open their hearts to the Holy Spirit and the gifts that he brings, that they and the whole parish community may be truly blessed.
Feast of Our Lady of the Assumption
Best wishes to all our parishioners and to those in our neighbouring parish of the Assumption as we celebrate this feast of Our Lady this coming Saturday with Mass at 10.30am.