Home | Adoration | Bulletin | Calendar | Contact | Covid-19 | Donate | Funeral | Mass | Ministries | Sacraments | Schools | Stewardship

COVID-19 INFORMATION AND UPDATES

 

 

February 16, 2022

Step 1 Health and Safety Guidelines and A Preliminary Update on Step 2 Lent and Easter Liturgical Guidelines

 

MANDATORY

MASKS - PHYSICAL DISTANCING

(as of September 16, 2021)

       

Religious gatherings are limited to one-third of fire code occupancy for in-person attendance.

LIMIT FOR IN-PERSON ATTENDANCE IN OUR CHURCHES:

Rocky Mountain House - 140 people  *  Evergreen - 70 people  *  Caroline - 25 people

FUNERALS – WEDDINGS – BAPTISMS

Indoor wedding ceremonies and funeral services are permitted with up to 50 people or 50 % of fire code occupancy, whichever is less. Indoor wedding and funeral receptions are prohibited. Attendance at baptisms is allowed for up to 50 people or 50% of fire code occupancy, whichever is less. Proper physical distancing and the use of masks are required during the celebration of the rite.

SOCIAL GATHERINGS

No social gatherings are permitted in parish halls and facilities. In-person meetings and faith-based meetings, which are not social gatherings, are allowed to continue with attendance limited to one third of the room's fire code occupancy (council meetings, RCIA, sacrament preparation, support groups, etc.). Masks must be worn.

FOR LITURGICAL GUIDELINES CLICK HERE

                   

MASS REGISTRATION IS NOT REQUIRED

PROVE OF VACCINATION NOT REQUIRED

TO ENTER OUR CHURCHES.

 

 

 

MASKS ARE MANDATORY AGAIN

(as of September 10, 2021)

Brothers and Sisters, out of an abundance of caution and with a desire to be part of the solution, the Catholic Archdiocese of Edmonton has made the decision to mandate masks in all indoor public facilities until further notice.

This is an effort to protect the health and safety of all the faithful and anyone who enters public facilities of the parish and Archdiocesan facilities. This continues to be a top priority of the Archdiocese, the pastor, parish staff and volunteers.

We continue to be in the thick of the COVID-19 pandemic. Across the province, cases are rising, as well as hospitalizations and the risk of virus spread. The risk continues to be present and so is the need to take personal responsibility by protecting yourself, and your neighbour, from this potentially deadly virus.

It is out of a sense of Christian duty that we protect each other from COVID-19 and slow the spread and prevent another wave as well as the potential for further, even tighter, restrictions on our ability to gather and to worship.

The dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass continues for dioceses in the Province of Alberta.

Livestreamed Masses continue for those who are unable to attend Mass in person, as well as those who feel uncomfortable wearing a mask in church.

Fr. Jim Corrigan, Vicar General

 

 

 

TEMPORARY MEASURES IN RESPONSE

TO COVID-19 PANDEMIC

 Update - September 09, 2021

MASS IN PARISH CHURCHES

 

The use of masks is required in all indoor public facilities of the parishes and Archdiocesan facilities, EXCEPT when attending weekday and Sunday Masses and liturgical and devotional services/prayers.

       • This exception does not include weddings and funerals.

       • Masks must be worn when outside the nave, such as in the narthex, hallways, and in other indoor public spaces in the parish facilities.

 

       • Exceptions cited by the government will be followed: individual is under 2 years of age or individual qualifies for a medical exception.

       • While recognizing that a person is not required to wear a face mask while participating in a worship service at a place of worship we strongly recommend that people continue to wear masks.

 

Congregational singing is suspended at this time.
 • Only one (1) cantor/soloist is allowed.
 • The cantor/soloist must wear the mask while singing/chanting and must be located away from the congregation and the instrumentalists/musicians.
       * The use of the mask is required when singing/chanting since this activity tends to project more spray/mist of respiratory droplets or aerosol.
 • Singing by the cantor/soloist will be limited to the following (Entrance antiphon or unfamiliar hymn - Preparation of the altar - Communion - Recessional)
 • Instrumental music may replace singing.

 

The offertory procession will not resume at this time to avoid unnecessary contact with the vessels. Its resumption will be decided by the end of October 2021.

 

DISTRIBUTION OF HOLY COMMUNION (REVISED)

 

 • Communion is only given under one species – the consecrated host.
 • Communion on the tongue continues to be offered.
 • If the Ordinary/Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion comes in contact with the Communicant in the distribution, please sanitize hands with a quick-drying, alcohol-based hand sanitizer before continuing to distribute Holy Communion.
 • The Precious Blood will only be available to the celebrant and concelebrants (priests).
 

PARISH OFFICES

 

Masks are mandatory in all indoor workplaces, except when working alone in an office or a safely distanced cubicle or an appropriate barrier is in place.
 • This applies to all employees, visitors, delivery personnel and contractors.

 • Working from home should be considered, where possible, when it does not hinder the normal
operations of the parish.
 

SOCIAL GATHERINGS

 

Albertans are encouraged to limit in-person contacts. Unvaccinated Albertans are strongly recommended to limit indoor social gatherings to close contacts of only 2 cohort families up to a maximum of 10 people.

 

USE OF PARISH HALL

 

In-person meetings and faith-based meetings, which are not social gatherings, are allowed to continue without restriction on the number of attendees, i.e. council meetings, RCIA, support groups, etc. Masks must be worn at all times.

 

FUNERALS - WEDDINGS - BAPTISMS - ADORATIONS

There is no capacity limit for in-person attendance. Masks must be worn at all times.

NO REGISTRATION NEEDED FOR ALL MASSES!

 

 

 

TEMPORARY MEASURES IN RESPONSE

TO COVID-19 PANDEMIC

 Effective Saturday - September 04, 2021

MASS

 

The use of masks is required in all public facilities of the parishes and Archdiocesan facilities.
       • Exceptions cited by the government will be followed: individual is under 2 years of age or individual qualifies for a medical exception.
       • Priests, deacons, and lectors must always wear the mask unless speaking and proclaiming.
      • Altar servers, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, cantor, and instrumentalists/musicians must wear masks at all times.

 

Congregational singing is suspended at this time.
       • Only one (1) cantor/soloist is allowed.
       • The cantor/soloist must wear the mask while singing/chanting and must be located away from the congregation and the instrumentalists/musicians.
       * The use of the mask is required when singing/chanting since this activity tends to project more spray/mist of respiratory droplets or aerosol.
       • Singing by the cantor/soloist will be limited to the following (Entrance antiphon or unfamiliar hymn - Preparation of the altar - Communion - Recessional)
       • Instrumental music may replace singing.

 

The offertory procession will not resume at this time to avoid unnecessary contact with the vessels. Its resumption will be decided by the end of October 2021.

 

DISTRIBUTION OF HOLY COMMUNION

 

Priests/deacons/extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion must wear mask during the distribution of Holy Communion. Hands must be sanitized prior to the distribution.

 

Mask use is mandatory for all the faithful. Parishioners who are not able to wear a mask for medical reasons can be exempt from this regulation except when receiving Holy Communion. All parishioners must wear masks when lining up for the distribution of Holy Communion, including those receiving Communion on the tongue or a “blessing.”

 

The communicant removes the mask in front of the priest/deacon/Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion to receive Communion and must put it back on after consuming the consecrated host.
 • Communion is only given under one species – the consecrated host.
 • Communion on the tongue continues to be available.
 • If the Ordinary/Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion comes in contact with the Communicant in the distribution, please sanitize hands with a quick-drying, alcohol-based hand sanitizer before continuing to distribute Holy Communion.
 • The Precious Blood will only be available to the celebrant and concelebrants.
 

PARISH OFFICES

 

Masks are mandatory in all indoor workplaces, except when working alone in an office or a safely distanced cubicle or an appropriate barrier is in place.
• This applies to all employees, visitors, delivery personnel and contractors.
 

SOCIAL GATHERINGS

 

Albertans are encouraged to limit in-person contacts. Unvaccinated Albertans are strongly recommended to limit indoor social gatherings to close contacts of only 2 cohort families up to a maximum of 10 people.

 

USE OF PARISH HALL

 

In-person meetings and faith-based meetings, which are not social gatherings, are allowed to continue without restriction on the number of attendees, i.e. council meetings, RCIA, support groups, etc. Masks must be worn at all times.

 

FUNERALS - WEDDINGS - BAPTISMS - ADORATIONS

There is no capacity limit for in-person attendance. Masks must be worn at all times.

NO REGISTRATION NEEDED FOR ALL MASSES!

 

 

 

STAGE 3 OF RELAUNCH STRATEGY

 Effective Thursday - July 01, 2021

  • Masks are not mandatory inside the church. Parishes within municipalities that have a mask bylaw in place should follow the local bylaw of that municipality. Parishioners who feel comfortable wearing masks may continue to do so.

  • Beginning July 1, 2021, pre-registration for Mass and contact tracing no longer need to take place.

  • No more physical distancing (2m) needed. Part of our church in Rocky Mountain House will be designated for people who would like to follow physical distancing anyway.

  • We can have Servers, Lectors, Music Ministers, Greeters/Ushers and Sacristans.

  • The distribution of Holy Communion will continue to be under one species, the Body of Christ.

  • The distribution of Holy Communion on the tongue is allowed.

  • The Sign of Peace: please offer one another the sign of peace by a bow.  A return to a handshake will be evaluated by the end of August 2021.

  • Music Ministry: All Mass parts can be sung. Congregational singing is allowed.

  • There is no capacity limit for in-person attendance.

  • Hospitality after Mass can take place.

  • The dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass continues and will be evaluated at the end of August 2021.

FUNERALS - WEDDINGS - BAPTISMS - ADORATIONS

There is no capacity limit for in-person attendance.

NO MORE REGISTRATION NEEDED

FOR WEEKEND MASSES!

 

 

EASING OF COVID-19 RESTRICTIONS IN ALBERTA - STAGE 2

 Effective from Thursday - June 10, 2021

Religious gatherings are limited to one-third of fire code occupancy for in-person attendance.

LIMIT FOR IN-PERSON ATTENDANCE IN OUR CHURCHES:

Rocky Mountain House - 140 people  *  Evergreen - 70 people  *  Caroline - 25 people

Funerals - 20 people * Weddings - 20 people * Baptisms - 20 people

Outdoor social gatherings, with proper distancing, allowed up to 20 people.
Indoor social gatherings are not permitted.

PLEASE, REGISTER ONLINE FOR WEEKEND MASSES ONLY!  NO NEED TO REGISTER FOR WEEKDAY MASSES!

On May 26, 2021 the province announced their open for summer plan

that documents the various stages of easing COVID-19 restrictions.

   

 2021-05-26

Effective from Friday - May 28, 2021:

WEEKDAY AND SUNDAY MASS

·   The capacity limit for worship services goes back to the 15% of the fire code occupancy.

·   There will be no change on funerals, weddings, and baptisms.

·        Distancing and masks remain mandatory.

 

Beginning Tuesday, June 1, 2021

·       Wedding ceremonies may have up to 10 people, including the officiant, bride/groom, witnesses and any photographers/videographers. Receptions remain prohibited.

  • NOTE: The government has now included photographers and videographers to the 10 people allowed.

  • The Diocese does not consider the soloist and the instrumentalist included in the 10 people allowed.

·       Funeral ceremonies may have up to 20 people, not including facility staff, funeral clergy or organizers not considered guests. Receptions remain prohibited.

·        The Archdiocese continues to limit the attendees to 10 people for Baptisms.

 

 

Further Background information about the reopening plans

 

Below is the summary of the announcement by Premier Jason Kenney. Please note the highlighted bullets that relate to some of the rites/Sacraments.

Alberta’s Open for Summer Plan includes three stages based on vaccination thresholds and hospitalizations:

 

  • Stage 1: Two weeks after 50% of Albertans age 12-plus have received at least one dose of vaccine and COVID-19 hospitalizations are below 800 and declining.

 

  • Stage 2: Two weeks after 60% of Albertans age 12-plus have received at least one dose of vaccine and COVID-19 hospitalizations are below 500 and declining.

 

  • Stage 3: Two weeks after 70% of Albertans age 12-plus have received at least one dose of vaccine.

 

Since Alberta reached the 50 percent threshold for one-dose vaccination on May 18, and with hospitalizations well below 800, Alberta will enter Stage 1 on June 1.

Based on the current pace of vaccinations, Alberta is projected to enter Stage 2 in mid-June and Stage 3 in late June or early July. These are estimates only and rely on all Albertans continuing to drive down our hospitalizations while increasing vaccination numbers.

 

STAGE 1

 

Starting Friday, May 28:

  • The capacity limit for worship services increases to 15 percent of fire code occupancy.

 

Starting June 1:

  • Outdoor social gatherings, with distancing, increase to up to 10 people.

    • Indoor social gatherings are still not permitted.

  • Outdoor patio dining can resume with a maximum of four people per table.

    • Everyone at the table must be members of the same household or for a person living alone, dining parties are limited to two close contacts.

    • Physical distancing and other restrictions still apply.

  • Outdoor physical, performance and recreational activities are permitted with up to 10 distanced people, for all ages.

  • Retail can increase to 15 per cent of fire code occupancy (must maintain ability to distance).

  • Personal and wellness services can reopen, by appointment only.

  • Wedding ceremonies may have up to 10 people, including the officiant, bride/groom, witnesses and any photographers/videographers. Receptions remain prohibited.

  • Funeral ceremonies may have up to 20 people, not including facility staff, funeral clergy or organizers not considered guests. Receptions remain prohibited.

  • Distancing and masking requirements remain in effect.

 

STAGE 2

 

  • Outdoor social gatherings increase to 20 people, with distancing

  • Wedding ceremonies may occur with up to 20 attendees. Receptions are permitted outdoors only.

  • Funeral ceremonies remain unchanged with up to 20 people permitted, not including facility staff, funeral clergy or organizers not considered guests. Receptions are permitted outdoors only.

  • Restaurants may seat tables with up to six people, indoors or outdoors.

    • Dining parties are no longer restricted to households only.

    • Physical distancing and other restrictions still apply.

  • Retail capacity increases to one-third of fire code occupancy (must maintain ability to distance).

  • Capacity for places of worship increases to one-third of fire code occupancy.

  • Gyms and other indoor fitness open for solo and drop-in activities with three-metre distancing between participants and fitness classes may resume with three-metre distancing.

  • Indoor settings may open with up to one-third of fire code occupancy, including indoor recreation centres. This includes arenas, cinemas, theatres, museums, art galleries and libraries.

  • Indoor and outdoor youth and adult sports resume with no restrictions.

  • Youth activities, such as day camps and play centres, may resume, with restrictions.

  • Personal and wellness services can resume walk-in services.

  • Post-secondary institutions can resume in-person learning.

  • The work-from-home order is lifted but still recommended.

  • Outdoor fixed seating facilities (e.g., grandstands) can open with one-third seated capacity.

  • Public outdoor gatherings increase to 150 people (e.g. concerts/festivals), with restrictions.

  • Distancing and masking requirements remain in effect.

 

STAGE 3

 

  • All restrictions are lifted, including the ban on indoor social gatherings.

  • Isolation requirements for confirmed cases of COVID-19 and some protective measures in continuing care settings remain.

 

Additional details on all restrictions and measures in place will be released prior to each step. Albertans can track the province’s immunization progress on alberta.ca.

 

Provincial COVID-19 transmission will continue to be monitored throughout the reopening. If required, a reopening step may be paused to respond to COVID-19 transmission trends at regional or provincial levels.

 

Sustained reopening will depend on Albertans getting fully vaccinated with two doses during the summer months to prevent future spread of COVID-19.

 

Alberta’s government is responding to the COVID-19 pandemic by protecting lives and livelihoods with precise measures to bend the curve, sustain small businesses and protect Alberta’s health-care system.

 

SOURCE:

https://www.alberta.ca/release.cfm?xID=78245A07B1BCA-D29D-4853-55C609A2834F05E3

 

   

 2021-05-05

Effective from Wednesday - May 05, 2021:

WEEKDAY AND SUNDAY MASS

·        In-person attendees limited to 15 people.

·        It is recommended that no music and/or cantoring at any of the Masses take place.

·        Parishes are strongly encouraged to continue to livestream Masses.

FUNERAL MASS

·        10 people maximum for funerals, including participants and guests.

·        Limit to 1 musician and 1 cantor.

·        Livestreaming is encouraged those relatives and friends unable to attend in person.

WEDDINGS AND BAPTISMS

·        Weddings: 10 people maximum with existing AHS parameters.

·        Baptisms: 10 people - may continue provided they adhere to existing AHS guidelines.

CONFESSIONS - ADORATION

For any other scheduled parish activity (Confessions, Adoration etc.), the maximum of 15 people in the parish applies.

   

 2021-01-18

Liturgical Guidelines Update

Effective January 18, wedding and funeral liturgies attendance is limited to:

  • -10 people maximum for wedding ceremonies. The maximum limit includes the officiant, bride/groom and witnesses. It does not include staff or organizers who are not considered an invited guest.

  • -20 people maximum for funeral services, with mandatory masking and 2 metre physical distancing between households. 10 people maximum for indoor and outdoor interments.

  • Wedding and funeral receptions are not permitted.

   

 2021-01-12

Guidelines for some aspects of the Holy Season of Lent

   

 2020-12-09

Liturgical Guidelines Update

Effective December 8, all indoor and outdoor social gatherings, public and private, are prohibited.

Effective December 13, masses are limited to 15% of fire code occupancy for in-person attendance. Services must be held at their normal location. Since the use of the parish hall as overflow is a normal location for liturgies in some parishes, these parishes can use both the church and their overflow space as long as they limit attendance in each to 15% of fire code occupancy, or less if required for safe social distancing. Please note that the church and the parish hall each have their own fire code occupancy.

In-person faith group meetings are still permitted when conducted at a place of worship as long as physical distancing and public health measures are followed. The maximum allowable attendance is 10.

Effective December 8, masks are mandatory in all indoor public spaces and workplaces. A reminder that the celebrant and others speaking in front of a congregation are permitted to remove their masks while speaking provided they maintain 2 meter distance from others while doing so. Once finished speaking, the speaker must put on their mask again.

The limit for funerals and  wedding liturgies is 10 (including officiant, bride and groom, and witnesses).

Baptisms within mass are not allowed. When celebrated outside of mass, the maximum allowable attendance is 10.

   

 2020-11-26

Liturgical Guidelines Update

Mask use continues to be mandatory throughout the liturgy for all the faithful. Those who are not able to wear a mask for medical reasons can be exempt from this regulation. The celebrant and others speaking in front of a congregation are permitted to remove their masks while speaking provided they maintain 2 meter distance from others while doing so. Once finished speaking, the speaker must put on their mask again.

At this time, weekday and Sunday masses cannot exceed one-third church capacity per service or less if required for safe social distancing.

The limit for funerals and internments outside or in mausoleums is 10. The limit for wedding liturgies is also 10 (including the officiant, the bride and groom, and the witnesses).

In-person faith group meetings conducted at a place of worship such as RCIA, Sacramental Preparation classes, CWL and Knights of Columbus can continue. The maximum allowable attendance is 10. Physical distancing and public health measures must be followed.

Baptisms within mass are not allowed. When celebrating liturgies of baptism outside of mass, the maximum allowable attendance is 10.

   

 2020-10-02

Update to Guidelines Re: Liturgical Celebrations and Use of Parish Space
   

 2020-09-17

Liturgical Music Update
   

 2020-09-14

On the Impact of COVID-19 and the Call to Christian Renewal

This letter – addressed to all the Catholic faithful – offers praise and thanks for the many examples of care and collaboration that have emerged during the pandemic; it also highlights some of the social challenges that have surfaced and that will need to be addressed going forward. 

In particular, the bishops are inviting Catholics to review the impact of COVID-19 within their homes, schools, workplaces, and society in general, in light of the gospel and the social teaching of the Church. Which values, attitudes and behaviours will we want to hold on to going forward? Which may be in need of remedy or renewal? Read more on Grandin Media here.

   

 2020-06-12

Guidelines for Weddings Funerals and Sacraments of Initiation

   


  Home page

Copyright © 2016 - 2020 ST. MATTHEW PARISH AND MISSIONS

St. Matthew Parish - Rocky Mountain House

Jesuit Martyrs Parish - Evergreen

St. Joseph the Workman Parish - Caroline

This site was last updated February 17, 2022