Our Lady of Mercy
Catholic Church

322 S. Vermont (PO Box 805) Mercedes, Tx. 78570

(956)565-1141 Office  ~  (956)565-1640 Fax  ~  (956)514-5138 CCE Office

olm@olmmercedes.org or  olm@cdob.org

Resumption of Mass at Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church

See important message and information below:
  • Welcome Back!
  • Restrictions and Dispensation
  • Location
  • Urgent Need for Volunteers

Welcome back!

 

Public Masses to resume, starting Monday, May 25, 2020.

 

The coronavirus pandemic has shaken the very foundations of our society built on the values of liberty and justice for all. Out of charity for the most vulnerable and for our own safety, we willingly accepted to remain confined in our homes, praying and hoping that God will remember us and lead us back soon to the outside world, to be with our relatives and friends, to enjoy our jobs and fun activities and, above all, to worship Him as one united family at our sacred place: Our Lady of Mercy Church.

 

On May 22, 2020, the Most Reverend Daniel E. Flores, Bishop of the Diocese of Brownsville, made this joyous announcement: “With gratitude to God, I am able to announce that conditions are now such that the Catholic churches and mission chapels in the Rio Grande Valley can, on Monday, May 25, 2020, resume the public celebration of Masses and other sacramental rites. This will take place with abundant precaution and strict protocols in keeping with the recommendations of health officials.Please read the full letter here.  (Español)

 

 

Restrictions and Dispensation

 

Seniors, parishioners with underlying health conditions, anyone who is not psychologically ready to join the congregation, and anyone who is under the weather… are urged to stay home and join the Mass celebration online.

 

“Faith is transmitted.” We believe that faith comes through the living testimony of our forebears. This is why, at Our Lady of Mercy, a great deal of attention is given to seniors, as in fact they constitute almost more than half of our Congregants and ministers. Unfortunately, these seniors are in the at-risk group and most vulnerable to the coronavirus. We must protect them. That is the reason why, and with a heavy heart, that I encourage all our seniors to continue to stay home, quoting our Bishop: “I urge in the strongest terms that those who are advanced in years, or suffer from complicating medical conditions, or feel in any way sick, should stay home. If you do not currently feel safe going out, even to Mass, stay home. The dispensation of the Catholic faithful from the obligation to attend Mass on Sunday remains in effect. We will continue to provide livestream broadcasts of parish and diocesan Masses for the benefit of those who should remain home."

 

In fact, not only seniors are urged to stay home, but anyone who for health reasons, either physical or psychological, is not yet ready to join the community, to please continue to shelter in place and pray along with Our Lady of Mercy through our livestreamed weekend celebrations. You are dispensed from physically attending church means that by Bishop’s authority, you are not to be held responsible for what would otherwise be a failure according to our faith and tradition. Our weekend Masses will continue to be broadcast through Facebook and YouTube in the same schedule:

 

  • Saturday at 5:00 pm in English
  • Sunday at 9:00 am in Spanish
  • Sunday at 11:00 am in English

 

Location

 

At Disinfected Parish Hall

The coronavirus is an ongoing health threat, and scientists have not yet come to a full understanding of its mechanisms. This is why health experts have been adamant in inviting us to use the only available weapons we have so far: high standards of hygiene and social distancing. In order to celebrate our Mass, we will observe those health rules very strictly. Bishop made it very clear in his letter:

 

“The parishes have been sent instructions with strict protocols to protect the health and safety of those who attend Mass and the wider community of the Rio Grande Valley. Our parishes will observe social distancing, face-masks will for now be required for those attending Mass, and parishioners will be required to disinfect their hands as they enter and leave the church. There will be special instructions for the reception of Holy Communion. Occupancy at any given Mass will be limited by the fact that only every other pew will be used for seating, and six feet will be observed between family groups and individuals. In most cases, this means that occupancy for Mass will be less than 50 percent.”

 

Social distancing and face covering are mandatory requirements for Church attendance.

 

In order to comply with social distancing and other health precautions, we will be using Our Lady of Mercy Parish Hall, where chairs can be separated and disinfected better than our cushioned pews and carpeted floor at Church.

 

 

Urgent Need for Volunteers

 

We need Volunteers for Cleaning and Ushering.

In light of everything we just said above, Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church of Mercedes is requesting the commitment from its Parish Family to be part of the Resumption of In-Person masses. There are considerable needs and commitments from YOU that are the only way to make this possible. Here are the needs that our Church require be filled in order to resume masses. The masses will take place in the parish hall which is most conducive to maintaining social distancing recommendations and effective cleaning and disinfection after each mass. Duties include:

 

* Cleaning Teams – we need to constitute at least 6 teams of 3 individuals each that are willing and capable to cleaning all surfaces after each mass. Duties would include spraying and wiping down all seats, doors, restroom fixtures, altar/ambo, and any other surfaces. This team would be the only ones in the hall at the time of cleaning/disinfecting. All cleaning supplies will be provided. Needed – 6 teams of 3 people, one team per mass.

 

*Ushers - will be needed to guide and seat each daughter and son of Our Lady coming to attend Mass, and help them follow the protocols and recommendations in force.

 

Those interested in that capacity must either:

 

________________________________________

 

IMPORTANT: Any/all those that volunteer must be willing and able to fulfill their role and commit to being part of these important and critical teams on a weekly basis. Our church cannot host in-person mass if we cannot commit to the safety and health of all parishioners including those attending. YOU are the most important path to resumption of our Communion with Christ and worshiping together. We cannot do this without you.