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Covid-19 Update

March 16, 2020

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

The coordinators executive committee along with Dennis O’Hare and Cathy Thooft met today to discuss our response and approach to the Covid-19 virus crisis and its impact on our community life.  I want to share with you some of the decisions and recommendations we are making to the community spiritually, pastorally, and practically and actions we are taking.

Regarding community meetings and events:

  1. We will follow the recommendations and decisions of government officials, CDC, and Church leaders insofar as it applies to our community life.

  2. As such, we are canceling all in-person community events that involve 50 or more people for the next 8 weeks.  This includes GCG’s, DG’s, courses, youth events, Formation events, Emmaus & Young Married Couples, Holy Week Liturgies

  3. We are asking that small groups (pastoral groups) do not meet in person for at least the next two weeks.  At that time we will assess our approach going forward.

Other action we are taking:

  1.  We are establishing a swift action committee that will include an executive coordinator, a senior woman leader, and two doctors who will convene as needs arise and give counsel to community leadership on this matter.

  2. We will continue to utilize the pastoral system in the community as the first line of communication and care for one another.  If you have questions, please reach out to those in the pastoral system. If you have medical questions, contact your provider.

  3. We are establishing a link on the front page of the community website that will be regularly updated with information on this matter.  All that is necessary is to log onto www.ccredeemer.org to access this page.

  4. We are also establishing on the website a page where ideas can be shared about how to continue to express our covenant life practically as we follow these restrictions.

  1. We are exploring some technology solutions to facilitate virtual meetings and events.  We ask you to keep scheduled events on your calendar as there may be a virtual option for them.

  2. We are exploring developing podcasts and other means of giving reflections, encouragement, teaching.  

Pastoral Counsel (this is not comprehensive but a few thoughts):

  1. Remember that the Lord is near, especially so in times of difficulty.  He cares for us, he does not abandon us. Fear is not of the Lord. Let us let the challenge of this situation press us more fully into him and to live more generously with one another.

  2. Let love prevail.  We each are different and face different circumstances.  We each need to make the choices and decisions that we deem right.  We should guard against what the catechism refers to as “rash judgment” (CCC #2477) and strive to relate to one another in mercy and patience and giving everyone the benefit of the doubt.

  3. Our relationships with one another in Christ are the foundation of our community.  Certainly not meeting together is a hardship. There are a number of risks we are facing with this virus, but one of the central risks is to our culture in the community, our way of life, our relationships, our care for one another.  Let us be creative and proactive in reaching out to and caring for one another. As mentioned above, we will be creating a forum where we can offer ideas on how to do this.

  4. We want to have a particular concern for the most vulnerable amongst us.  There will likely be real needs that arise in individuals and families as this situation unfolds.  Let us be thoughtful and responsive.  

  5. If you need help, please let the brothers and sisters know.

  6. Archbishop Hebda has asked that we join in a Day of Fasting and Prayer this Wednesday, March 18th.

Please find attached a very helpful letter written by Dr. Matt Turner and Dr. Craig Peine that provides much excellent information and perspective on the current situation from a medical perspective.

On behalf of the executive committee,

Your brother and servant in Christ,

Gordy

Video Reflections: