Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
The holy season of Lent is just around the corner and I look forward to this season and, also, experiencing our walk through Lent with fewer COVID-related restrictions. Thankfully, the community spread continues to improve and vaccines remain free and widely available.
I am pleased to announce that I will not need to renew the prohibitions of the last two years around the imposition of ashes, the distribution of palms, or the mandatum (the Maundy Thursday footwashing). These treasured expressions of our faith will again be a part of our Lenten and Holy Week liturgies, and I could not be happier.
The governor recently lifted the mandate that people wear masks indoors, with the exception that “unvaccinated individuals and children ages 2 and up not eligible for the vaccine should continue to wear face coverings.” For some churches mask-wearing is optional, others are requiring that masks be worn by those who are unvaccinated, and a few require masks for all persons. Clergy and lay leadership, working together, will continue to have the opportunity to make the decision that is best for their parish. +Kevin