The Diocese of Camden has instructed parishes to create a plan for reopening. During the initial phase, there will be new protocols and procedures implemented for everyone’s safety. Please read and become familiar with them. We thank you in advance for your patience and cooperation.
During the initial phase, all Masses will be held at Assumption Church to allow for maximum attendance with safe social distancing. The Mass schedule will be adjusted to allow time to sanitize the church between Masses.
Weekend Mass times will be as follows:
Saturday at 4pm and 6pm
Sunday at 8am, 10am, 12pm and 2pm
The Saturday 4pm and Sunday 10am Masses will be live streamed.
During the initial phase, the dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass will remain in place in our diocese.
- Those who fall into an “at risk” category as well as families with younger children who may find it difficult to maintain a six-foot distance from others are encouraged to remain at home and join us via live stream.
- If you are not feeling well, have a cough or ANY other symptoms, please remain at home.
CAPACITY & SEAT RESERVATION
During the initial phase, we will open at a limited capacity (most likely 25%).
- To ensure that we have seating available for those who would like to attend Mass, we are asking parishioners to reserve their seat online before each weekend. Instructions for reserving your seats will be posted on our website prior to the first weekend of public Masses.
- Those unable to reserve online will be able to call the parish office.
BEFORE YOU ARRIVE
- Plan to arrive 30 minutes before Mass begins
- Print or be prepared to pull up your reservation confirmation email on your phone.
- Please wash your hands before leaving home.
- Bring a face covering. They will be required on the parish grounds and during Mass.
- Keep in mind that the chapel (cry room) will be closed.
- The restrooms will not be available due to inadequate space for social distancing and the inability to sanitize after each use.
- Masks should be worn as soon as you exit your vehicle.
- Lines on the sidewalk at 6 foot distances will indicate where you can wait to enter the church.
- Please have your reservation confirmation ready to show staff when entering.
- Hand sanitizer will be available upon entering the church. A staff member will pump the sanitizer directly into your hands.
- Each household will be seated to fill the open pews from front to back. Every other pew will be closed.
- You may be sharing a pew with another household, but social distance is required between the households (6ft).
- The center sections will be seated first followed by the outer sections
- No one will be permitted to congregate in the aisles.
- The holy water fonts will remain empty.
- Masses will be celebrated with minimal singing during the initial phase. There will be no choir.
- Parish staff will serve as ushers until further notice. Altar servers will not serve during the initial phase.
- Please keep your face mask on for the duration of Mass.
- Baskets will not be passed during the offertory. You will be able to place your weekly gift in a basket as you exit the church, but we strongly encourage online giving through Parishgiving.
- Holy Communion will NOT take place at the normal time, but AFTER the final blessing.
- Holy Communion will only be distributed by our clergy and our acolyte. Only the Precious Body (host) will be offered.
- The preferred way to receive will be on the hand-without physical contact. Those who choose to receive on their tongue will be able to do so. Hand sanitizer will be used by clergy in the event of any physical contact while distributing Communion.
- There will be three stations for Holy Communion, two at the front and one at the rear of the church (See Diagram below).
- Communicants choosing to receive Holy Communion in their hand will be directed by an usher when to exit their pews and proceed to the station. Sections 1 and 2 will receive at the station in the back of the church. Sections 3 and 4 will receive in the front station. Sections 2 and 4 will receive first. Sections 1 and 3 will receive after 2 and 4 have been cleared (See Diagram below).
- Communicants choosing to receive Holy Communion on their tongue will likewise be directed by an usher when to exit their respective pews. There will be a station dedicated ONLY for such parishioners. They will simply bypass the other stations and proceed to the station situated in the front and center of the church, just in front of the altar.
- Masks should be worn in the communion line. When you are about to receive, remove your mask, consume the Eucharist, and then re-mask.
- Those parishioners not wanting to receive can line up with those who will receive and simply bypass the Communion station as they depart.
- Please depart immediately after receiving Communion by the nearest exit as directed by the ushers. Do not return to your pew.
- Please depart in prayerful silence.
- Do not congregate outside, but head directly to your vehicle, maintaining a safe social distance (6ft).
We understand that some of these procedures may seem burdensome, but they are being implemented to help keep everyone safe. We look forward to and pray for the day when we can all gather again without restrictions. If you have any questions, please contact the parish office at 856-767-0719.
The full parish plans are available for review here: Reopening Procedures and Safety Protocols