The Archdiocese of Boston has recommended that all Churches keep their doors open during Mass throughout the winter months. They want to provide for everyone’s safety by having parishes maintain air circulation during Mass. Here in our parish we will open the two side front doors and the door to the accessible entrance. I have brought in room dividers for the back rows and HC area as well. The dividers will shield the folks from the wind in all the rows nearest these doors, while allowing for the desired circulation. When I was a kid growing up, I would sometimes leave the door open during the winter, to which my dad would yell, “We don’t live in a barn and I’m not heating Allston, shut the door!” Well, the joke’s on him! We will now be heating Ocean Bluff. Thanks COVID!!

Among our safety protocols is the duration of each Mass. Last week we began the expedited Masses. Please remember the 4:00pm Vigil and 10:00am Mass have music and will be thirty minutes in length, while the 7:30am 11:30am and 7:00pm Masses will be shorter, about twenty-two minutes in duration.

I can’t say enough about how much I appreciate each of you following the safety protocols. One of which we might start getting lax about is the social distancing at Communion. I’ve noticed that at some Masses, while we are in a single line, we are not six feet apart. If you’re in a family group I’m not expecting this distance, but if not, please consider honoring the 6-foot distance standard. Just look at the marks on the floor and they’ll guide you safely on your way. I want folks to feel safe, that is, to the extent I can do this with these suggestions.

This past Sunday I participated in calling down the Holy Spirit upon our Confirmandi at the 11:30am Mass. The Very Reverend Bob Connors visited the parish and Confirmed our Juniors. I was so proud to present the candidates and to speak about their kind hearts and social work, including Mission trips to Chicago, New Jersey and Washington D.C. As parishioners you should take pride in the fact that you participated in these programs with them through your support of our mission work, your prayers and good wishes. Thanks to all of you for bringing forth such good kids!

We will host the ANNUAL MASS OF REMEMBRANCE on November 15th at the 10:00am Mass. Please note that we usually celebrate this event at the 11:30 Mass, but I wanted to move it to the 10:00am Mass so more folks could see what this event is all about. We’ll remember all of those we buried here from our parish, and the names of others from outside the parish (of course we look to you to supply the name of a relative who died this past year….so please call Catherine Rein this week with their name). We light a sanctuary candle for each of the loved ones whose family is here for the Mass and we send then give the candle to a member of that family. Due to the nature of the Mass the duration will be likely in the 30 – 45 minute range (this one time only).

Thanks to those who have brought us turkeys and trimmings for the single mothers at Julie’s Learning Center in South Boston. As a result of your generosity, 50 families in neighborhoods in and beyond South Boston will have a turkey dinner for their children, and boy, I want you to know first hand, they are very thankful.

Please drop the turkeys off in the Rectory three-season porch and ring the door bell so that we can place them in our freezer. Thanks.

Each Saturday afternoon around and hour before Mass I hear Confessions (by appointment at that hour or on a drop in basis) and do so in the ventilated three-season porch. This is an important sacrament and so I invite you to avail yourself of the sacred moment. May God Bless each of us and keep us safe.

Fr.  John F. Carmichael, Pastor