COVID Update – August 2021

August 4, 2021

Dear Parish Family of St. Emily’s,

At various points in my life, I have heard people say, “We are living in unprecedented times.” While everyone defines unprecedented in his or her own way, I believe we can all agree that the past 17 months probably fit most everyone’s definition. No one among us has been untouched by Covid in some way over this past year and a half and we continue to navigate these uncharted waters as best we can. In June, we eagerly welcomed the news of lower Covid rates and the lifting of restrictions. Those who were vaccinated were able to attend Mass without masks; we could see smiles on faces once again, and SING! There was a light at the end of the tunnel.

But the tunnel is longer than we originally thought. Rates are rising and we are being asked to exercise greater caution once again. The Archdiocese regularly reviews information from the CDC and IDPH and keeps us apprised of best practices for the safety and health of our people. So, where does that leave us today?

As of today, we are asked to put our personal health and the care of the common good first and foremost and are encouraged to wear masks whenever gathering in large groups indoors; this includes times of worship. Note that masks are not mandatory at this time, but strongly encouraged for the good of all. We are also reminded of the importance of getting vaccinated to protect against the more severe symptoms of the virus. Pope Francis has told us, “It’s an ethical choice, because you are playing with health, life, but you are also playing with the lives of others.” Thank you if you have responded to the Pope’s call to be vaccinated. If you have received the first of two doses, please remember to make an appointment for your second dose. If you have not yet been vaccinated, please consider doing so in the near future.

As we know, things continue to change daily. We will do our best to share any Archdiocesan directives we receive as expeditiously as possible. In the meantime, be safe and know that you and your families are held in our prayers.