A Note from Fr. Peter
Dear Fellow Parishioners,
Let us give thanks to the Lord for he is good; his love endures forever (Ps 107).
As announced recently, the doors of our beautiful church are reopening this Sunday, the 26th of July, taking us in to celebrate the liturgy of the Word and the Eucharist, which was suspended months ago due to the threat of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Although, this global health crisis is yet to be suitably contained in many places, the government and our own Church leaders have graciously asked pastors to reopen their places of worship so that Christ's faithful may nourish their spiritual lives. Many churches believe this to be a good decision.
Our Church Reopening Steering Committee, with the Administrative Staff, has done an amazing job of preparing our Church facilities and of training liturgical ministers to serve parishioners who will be returning to mass each Sunday. The training was necessary to help implement some modifications due to the pandemic, which will be seen in our liturgies. The Covid-19 pandemic has given many institutions, families, and individuals reasons to make adjustments to their schedules and lifestyles. These changes have helped save many lives from the ravages of the coronavirus. As one of our measures to protect the health of our church family at St Martin's, necessary changes are also being made to our liturgical life and schedules. I encourage everyone to look out for these changes in The Procedures for Masses at St Martin De Porres Church, attached to this letter. Moreover, I want to kindly ask every parishioner to welcome these changes with a good spirit, as they seem to be the best options chosen for the highest interest of our faith community. The new schedule should last only for a short time. Based on the CDC guidelines for safety, our Church has the capacity to seat no more than 54 people. An overflow of a church facility, especially at this time, can pose a serious health threat to others in the congregation, and this needs to be prevented at St Martin's. In that regard, therefore, please consider doing the following: Pre register for Sunday mass by calling the parish office at 716-886-4096, or by visiting the parish website, www. stmartindpbuffalo.org, to fill out a registration form and complete your registration no later than Thursday 2pm each week to alert us of your continuing attendance. Dear parishioners, I deeply regret every inconvenience that any of these changes and demands will cause you and your families. However, I trust you will be able to do all that is needed to keep yourselves, your families and your fellow parishioners happy and safe. Finally, I want to offer my sincerest gratitude, prayers, and best wishes to our Church Reopening Steering Committee and Administrative Staff for the brilliant job they have accomplished for our faith community during this difficult time. Also, I would like to express my appreciation to you, our parishioners, for allowing the pastoral team to continue to guide our faith journey at this point. Surely, none of us will lose our rewards (Mtt. 10:42). May God bless and keep us safe as we joyfully return to the House of Prayer.
Fr Peter Ekanem