Mass Guidelines & Miscellaneous Information


This page was last updated, Thursday December 2, 2020.

Please check back for more more expected updates to this page over the next few weeks.  Covid-19 numbers are increasing at such a rate that it is expected that there will be some changes coming.

Governor Mike Parson announced November 12, 2020 new guidelines for K-12 schools.  Proper mask wearing and hand hygiene and social distancing continue to be encouraged.  Parishes have been asked to "adhere to the guidance put forth by the health department of the county in which it resides".  St. Louis County has announced that it's health department will continue to follow CDC guidance  available at cdc.gov

Community members who are currently self-quarantined  are requested to abide by the quarantine period that has already been set for them.

St. Louis and St. Louis County guidelines require face masks in enclosed places of public accommodation, as well as outdoors when social distancing is not possible.  In response, all parishes within the city of St. Louis and St. Louis County should mandate that face masks be worn at all times by the congregation on parish grounds, except during the reception of Holy Communion.  This does not apply to parishes outside the St. Louis City and St. Louis County areas.

A new Archbishop has been installed for the Archdiocese of St. Louis!  Welcome Archbishop Mitchell T. Rozanski.  The Installation Mass for Archbishop-designate Rozanski was held August 25, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis.  A recording of the live mass can be viewed online on Youtube (Installation of Archbishop Rozanski) and Facebook.  Additional information is available at archstl.org/archbishop
.

Please pray for Archbishop Carlson as he begins his well-deserved retirement, and please pray for Archbishop Rozanski as he begins his new assignment in the Archdiocese of St. Louis.

There have been cases of Covid-19 among the priests of the archdiocese and these cases continue to pop up.   Please pray for our priests!

Kenrick-Glennon Seminary is now providing virtual classes for seminarians.  There have been some positive Covid-19 tests there.  Seminary speakers for the Kenrick-Glennon Christmas collection have all been canceled.  The annual Holy Land trip for seminarians has been canceled.  Seminarians who have parish assignments will not return to those assignments until after Thanksgiving.

The Communications Office of the Archdiocese of St. Louis has received complaints from people that guidelines have not been followed at some Masses within the archdiocese.  For the latest and most up-to-date guidelines provided for parishes of the St. Louis Archdiocese, please visit:  https://www.archstl.org/coronavirus

The Dispensation for public Mass remains in effect.  This Dispensation is extended to Holy Days of Obligation (including Immaculate Conception, December 8th, Christmas day and Solemnity of Mary, January 1).

The Archdiocese of St.  Louis is asking families to make room for the Eucharist by considering attending an alternate Mass this Christmas.  Based on past years attendance, Christmas Eve Masses always seem to have high attendance rates.  Priests are being permitted to add extra Mass times on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but the faithful are being asked to help make room for all by attending the Christmas Day Masses if possible to lighten the load on Christmas Eve.

In order to keep our parish communities safe, if anyone in your parish community is diagnosed with COVID-19, please report.

Respect Life Apostolate announces the archdiocesan parish launch of the national Walking with Moms in Need campaign.  More information can be found at www.walkingwithmoms.com.

It has been announced that an immediate suspension of all music composed by David Haas is being imposed in Archdiocese of St. Louis parishes.  Mr. Haas has been accused of multiple instances of sexual abuse by adult women.  All David Haas music is being suspended pending the results of an investigation.

All guidelines from the Archdiocese of St. Louis for the offering of public Mass during the pandemic can be found at:  https://www.archstl.org/coronavirus-covid-19.

           

What does this mean for Immaculate Conception and St. John the Apostle parishes? 

There have been few positive cases of Covid-19 amongst our parishioners reported to the Rectory.  There have been no breakouts associated with our parishes.  We shall continue to follow guidance provided and ask that all who enter our Churches please wear a mask, use hand sanitizer and maintain a social distance of 6 feet from all other individuals not of their household.

Fr. Mark Ebert and Deacon Michael Burch, as well as all of the staff and volunteers here at Immaculate Conception and St. John the Apostle continue to enjoy good health and our return to public Masses is going well.  Every week we see a few more familiar faces at Mass.  To those who have not yet returned, please know that we miss you.

If anyone in our parish community is diagnosed with COVID-19, please contact the Rectory office to let us know.   We are hearing about more cases of parishioners testing positive for Covid-19.  As far as we know none of these cases have been traced to Mass attendance.

As a result of Kenrick-Glennon Seminary canceling seminarian speaking assignments for the Seminary Christmas Collection, we will not have a seminarian speaker in the weeks leading up to Christmas as has been our custom.  We encourage everyone to remember our seminarians and to contribute generously to the Seminary Christmas Collection this year.

It should be well known that the Catholic Church does not support or condemn political candidates or parties.  That policy is followed by Fr. Ebert and Deacon Mike when speaking publicly.  Having said this, there are definitely political issues for which practicing Catholics may voice their opinions and Catholic teachings which lead us to support certain platforms or portions of a political platform without publicly condemning individual candidates or a particular political party.  The Catholic church is neither Republican nor Democrat, but supports and condemns various issues of all parties.  We encourage everyone to educate yourselves about candidates, political parties and issues and to have a good knowledge of Catholic teachings!

2020/2021 Parish School of Religion began in September.  Most of our classes will be learning from home until the COVID19 outbreaks subside.  Only the sacramental year classes will be meeting in-person each Wednesday night.  Our Second Grade (First Penance and First Eucharist) class will meet in person with  Mrs. Rachel Martin  teaching the Second Grade this year.  Students in the second grade PSR class are prepared for both Penance and Eucharist with First Penance being provided in December and First Eucharist being provided in either April or May.  Mrs. Deborah Mount has decided not to return to the classroom.  We thank her for her many years of service to the Parish School of Religion program and wish her well.  Deacon Michael Burch will continue to teach the 7th-8th Grade class.  This is a Confirmation year and students enrolled in the 7th-8th grade will be eligible to receive the sacrament of Confirmation in the spring of 2021.

It is still our hope that all classes will be able to return for in-person PSR classes at some point before the 2020-2021 school year ends.

Recommended safety guidelines will be followed for in-person classes.

PSR registration is available online.    In-person registration is available at the Rectory Office--please call first.  Please visit our online PSR page to print documents for PSR registration and media authorization. Fees are $50 per household for families with students enrolling in the sacramental year classes.  Fees are $25 per student, not to exceed $50 per family, for all other grades K-12. 

Books will be provided to students in all  K-6 grades who register.  Online resources will be provided to aid parents with their children's instruction.  High School, grades 9-12, do not follow a textbook; however, Mrs. Hoppe will be returning as catechist and will provide at-home lessons and activities.     Please pray for our PSR students and staff.

Please continue to pray for the parish, staff and all of our shut-ins and nursing home residents.

Both Immaculate Conception and St. John the Apostle have returned to the Mass schedules in effect before the pandemic began.  Weekday Masses at Immaculate Conception, Monday-Thursday, 8:00 a.m., Saturday Mass at 5:00 p.m. and Sunday Mass at 10:30 a.m.  St. John the Apostle has returned to Sunday Mass at 8:00 a.m.  Confession  is available at both parishes before weekend Masses or by appointment.

Please Note:  Mass times at both Immaculate Conception and St. John the Apostle for Christmas Masses remain unchanged from past years.  As noted above, the Archdiocese of St. Louis has asked that "families make room for the Eucharist" at Christmas.  The Archdiocese is asking that families be encouraged to attend Mass on Christmas Day as opposed to attending an overly crowded Christmas Eve Mass.  We hope that you will consider this request when making your choice of which Mass to attend.  Mass attendance on Christmas at both Immaculate Conception and St. John the Apostle follow the general trend found throughout the Archdiocese of St. Louis.  That is, Mass attendance for the Christmas morning Masses has always tended to be much less crowded than the Christmas Eve Mass provided.

Mass times for The Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary will be as follows:

    St. John the Apostle, Bismarck-Monday, December 7, 2020, 7:30 p.m.
    Immaculate Conception, Park Hills-Tuesday, December 8, 2020, 8:00 a.m. & 7:30 p.m.

Mass times for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day will be as follows:   

    
Immaculate Conception, Park Hills- Thursday, December 24, 2020, 4:00 p.m. 
 

    St. John the Apostle, Bismarck-Friday, December 25, 2020, 8:00 a.m.
    Immaculate Conception, Park Hills, Friday, December 25, 2020, 10:30 a.m.

Mass times for Mary, Mother of God will be as follows:

    Immaculate Conception, Park Hills, Thursday, December 31, 2020, 5:00 p.m

    St . John the Apostle, Bismarck-Friday, January 1, 2020, 8:00 a.m.
    Immaculate Conception, Park Hills-Friday, January 1, 2020, 10:30 a.m.

St. Louis County parishes have enacted capacity restrictions for all parish churches celebrating public Mass in St. Louis County of 25%.  St. Louis City and parishes outside of the St. Louis County remain at 50%.  Neither Immaculate Conception nor St. John the Apostle have had to turn people away and there has always been plenty of room in our pews even at the 50% cap on capacity.

Both Immaculate Conception and St. John the Apostle continue to follow safety guidelines as outlined by the Archdiocese of St. Louis and recommended by the St. Francois County Health Department.  We ask that all people entering our church buildings please maintain social distancing of 6 feet between themselves and others not of their household and please wear a mask.    If you have a temperature or do not feel well, please stay home.  Hand sanitizer is available throughout the church and visitors are encouraged to use it.

The general dispensation from the Sunday Mass obligation remains.  Anyone who has concerns for  their own health and welfare or for their families, may continue to live-stream or watch Mass on television or electronically even though physical attendance at Masses is  allowed.  Attendance is allowed, it is not required at this time.  Parishes that have been live-streaming are being encouraged to continue doing so for the time being.   We do encourage you to either attend Mass at your home church or to continue watching the Mass from your home either on television or live-streamed on an electronic device.

If you are 60+ years of age or have an underlying health condition, we do encourage you to remain home at this time. 

If you have a fever,  or if you have other symptoms associated with COVID-19, please stay home! 
For a list of symptoms visit the CDC website.  The link is provided below. 

We have returned to our 3rd Wednesday of the month Eucharistic Adoration.  Please join us on the third Wednesday of the month.  Adoration begins at the close of the morning Mass around 8:30 and ends with Benediction at 11:30 a.m.  Social distancing practices remain in effect.

Groups may now have organizational meetings at the discretion of Fr. Ebert.   Social distancing practices remain in effect.

No receptions or social gatherings are yet allowed after Mass.  This means that Fr. Ebert and Deacon Mike will not be allowed to greet you at the conclusion of Mass.  There will be no gatherings in the parish hall for coffee and donuts for the time being. 

Baptisms, weddings and funerals are allowed, but no gatherings associated with these events
(i.e. funeral dinners) are allowed until further notice.

We will let you know about any other events as they draw closer.  Please refer back to this page and to upcoming bulletins.   The annual dinners held for our patronal feast days, The Feast of the Immaculate Conception, December 8 and St. John the Apostle Feast Day, December 27 will not be held this year.  Neither the Mary & Martha Sodality nor the Knights of Columbus will hold their annual Christmas dinner celebrations this year either.

Confession at Immaculate Conception on Saturdays is 4:15-4:45 p.m., Sundays 10:00-10:15 a.m.  Confession at St. John the Apostle is Sundays 7:30-7:45 a.m.  Please maintain 6 ft. of distance between yourself and the next nearest person in line.  All Confessions are behind the screen with no face-face Confession permitted at this time.

There will be no receiving of the Sacrament of Communion from the cup until permission has been granted by the Archbishop.  The Holy Body of Christ will be available during Mass.  Please respect the 6 ft of social distancing guidelines.  Markings can be found on the floor.  Since the cup will not be used, our regular Eucharistic Ministers will not be scheduled.

Holy Communion for the home-bound has resumed with safety measures in place including the use of masks, sanitizer and adhering to social distancing.  Visits to nursing homes, hospitals and the prison system are restricted, but please keep us informed and we will do what we can when we can.

Anointing of the Sick by a priest is still possible for those who are seriously ill or in danger of death.  Please contact Fr. Ebert to schedule a home visit.  If you are experiencing cold or flu-like symptoms, or have a fever, or have tested positive for COVID-19,  please inform Fr. Ebert before scheduling the visit. 

Anointing of the Sick will be provided in a communal celebration as part of the holy Mass on Sunday, December 13, 2020 at both the 8:00 a.m. Mass at St. John the Apostle and the 10:30 a.m. Mass at Immaculate Conception.  For those who are not yet comfortable with returning to a public Mass, please contact Fr. Ebert to arrange for a visit to your home to be anointed.

If you are on our regular list to serve as lector at either parish, and if you have reservations about serving at this time, please let Brenda know so that she can schedule accordingly.  There will be no greeters before Mass and no special ministers scheduled for Communion.  The number of altar servers requested for each Mass has been reduced to 2.  There will be no Children's Liturgy of the Word during Mass.

The Eucharistic Ministers must wear a mask at all times.

Communicants should continue to wear masks, with the exception of the moment of receiving Holy Communion.

Volunteers to help with the new guidelines/procedures would be welcome.  Please speak with Fr. Ebert or Deacon Mike. 

Rosary will begin 1/2 hour before weekend Masses on the first weekend of each month. The Rosary leader may wish to remain in the pews rather than leading from the pulpit.  A patriotic rosary is being held in the parish hall at Immaculate Conception every Tuesday at 6:00 p.m.  All are welcome.

Hand sanitizer and extra masks will continue to be made available and easily accessible as long as the supply lasts.

Social distancing should be adhered to in all cases outside of distributing Holy Communion.

We would like to remind you that the parish grounds are always open.

The parish bulletin has been published every single week including during the period of Mass suspensions.  Extra copies of weeks which you may have missed are still available upon request, although we are running out of  storage space and will need to begin discarding some of them soon.   Paper copies of the most recent weekly bulletins  will continue to be made available outside in the water-proof boxes that have been installed at both Immaculate Conception and St.  John the Apostle.  The box at Immaculate Conception is located at the front of the church on the memorial pavers patio fencing, and the box at St. John the Apostle is  on the handrail at the front steps.  The bulletin is also available every week on this website (see menu at left Church Bulletins), or if you so choose, you may arrange to receive an e-bulletin to your personal inbox.  To subscribe for e-bulletins visit https://ebulletin.jspaluch.com.

Mass Intention requests may continue to be dropped off at the office or mailed to Immaculate Conception at PO Box 66, Park Hills, MO  63601.  Likewise, if you would like a candle lit in the alcove, please let us know.

More information and links about online and televised Masses continues to be made available here on our website.  Visit our Links page for more information about accessing online and televised Masses.

We ask that you please keep the needs of your parish and other individuals in mind.  Lots of prayer is needed at this time.  There will be many who will be uncomfortable with returning to a public Mass at this time because of age or health issues.   Keep in touch with your family members and neighbors and make sure they have what they need. Keep in mind that people who tend to suffer from depression and anxiety  may be finding this period of social isolation especially difficult, so don't hesitate to call and just let them know that you are thinking about them and praying for them.   Fr. Ebert, Deacon Burch and Brenda Carrow   are only a phone call or email away.  Please keep in touch and let us know what we can do for you.

Remember our food pantries and other charitable organizations.  Consider supporting St. Vincent De Paul, Catholic Charities of St. Louis and the Annual Catholic Appeal as there is  a greater demand placed on all of these organizations right now.    THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION FOOD PANTRY  CONTINUES TO BE OPEN ON FRIDAYS 7:30-9:30 A.M.!  Safety precautions and Social distancing procedures have been put in place. 


There are "stationary" collection baskets in place at weekend Masses.   Online giving remains an option and can be accessed through our online giving webpage which can be found on the menu at left listed as Give (Online Giving).  Online giving can be provided directly through your bank or by credit card.  Tithes/donations can always be dropped off or mailed to Immaculate Conception.  To mail your contribution or any other communications, please send to Immaculate Conception, P.O. Box 66, Park Hills, MO. 
Thank you once again to those who find ways to provide donations to us throughout the period of Mass suspension and to those who continue to provide their donations even when they themselves may not be able to attend in-person. 


For more information or for a prayer from the USCCB, visit archstl.org/coronavirus .  For information about the virus visit the website for the Centers for Disease Control at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html .

Live Streaming of Masses Daily from the Cathedral Basilica, St. Louis!
Daily Masses 10:00 a.m.


A BIG SHOUT OUT TO ALL OF OUR ADVERTISERS!

Weekly bulletins are sponsored by:

Bauman Oil Distributors, Inc.
Catholic Cruises & Tours
Catholic Match Missouri
Catholic Supply of St. Louis, Inc.
C.Z. Boyer & Son Funeral Homes
Earth Mother Health Foods
First State Community Bank
Grand True Value Rental (Farmington)
Jeff Swinarski, M.D., F.A.C.S.
Karsch Family Dental (Farmington)
Knights of Columbus 11882, Park Hills
Koppeis Heating & Cooling (Farmington)
LeafGuard
Master Shield Gutter Protection
McDonalds of Desloge
The Pasta Hous Co. (Farmington)
Save-A-Lot
Westmount Dental Arts (Farmington)


Time, Talent, Treasure Directory 2020 sponsored by:

C.Z. Boyer & Son Funeral Homes
Domino's
Edward Jones, Brandon Penberthy, Financial Advisor (Desloge)
First State Community Bank
Karsch Family Dental
ReFresh Retail Store
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