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COVID-19

The COVID-19 website page has been created to provide the latest updates for parishes and schools regarding notices, preventative measures and closings, as necessary.  We are closely monitoring the situation and following the expertise of the Vermont Department of Health and Agency of Education as well as the Center of Disease Control (CDC) in order to ensure the health and well-being of our community.  Please visit for the latest updates.

Parishes

Bishop Christopher J. Coyne is working with pastors, the Vermont Health Department and the CDC to ensure the safety of the Catholic Community during these challenging times.  Through prayer, the practice of recommended preventative measures (such as staying home when sick or in contact with someone that has COVID-19), good hygiene and common sense, we will get through this together.

 

Bishop Christopher J. Coyne Notices to parishes regarding the following precautionary measures (click dates to read full notice):

Update March 27: Impact of closure of churches on Holy Week and other ministries of the Catholic Church. Holy Week and Easter will be live-streamed on vermontcatholic.org/tvmass

Effective March 25: Diocese of Burlington to close all churches, chapels and indoor shrines as of 5:00 p.m. today follow Governor Scott’s “Stay at Home” order.

Effective March 20: All regularly scheduled public celebrations of the Catholic Mass, sacraments and devotions are suspended until further notice. 

Letter March 19: Letter from Bishop Coyne to parishioners regarding the pandemic update and resources.

Notice March 18: Bishop Coyne has asked each parish and chapel to erect a shrine either inside or outside of the church to pray for deliverance from the COVID-19 outbreak. A candle will be kept burning in front of the Blessed Mother for those who have died, for those who are ill, for the doctors, nurses, and caretakers who are treating the sick, for those with suffering family members, for those who are in mourning, for those who are vulnerable, for those who are afraid, and for those leaders whose decisions impact the pandemic.

Effective March 15: All Catholic schools will be closed March 17-April 15. The situation will be monitored and adjusted as warranted.

Effective March 14: The obligation to attend Sunday Mass has been suspended for all Catholics. Mass will still be offered.

Statement March 13: Our response to the challenges of the COVID-19 virus will be guided by local, state and public health experts. So, for example, if a local school system is shut down because of the virus, any Catholic school in that district would close as well.  If the state directs that no public gatherings of people should take place for the foreseeable future, then the public celebrations of the Church’s liturgy, including Mass, would be suspended. Older and elderly adults as well as Catholics from vulnerable populations are dispensed from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass. 

Effective March 11: Recommended and encouraged that the reception of Holy Communion be in the hand only. If receiving on the tongue, come to receive Holy Communion towards the end of the communion line and receive from the priest.  All Holy Water removed from all fonts and fonts removed if possible.

Effective March 4: Suspension of communion from the cup, Sign of Peace and holding hands during the Our Father.

Prayer for Making a Spiritual Communion

My Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most holy Eucharist. I love you above all things, and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.

 

Schools

The Superintendent of Catholic Schools, Jeanne Gearon, is working closely with the Catholic School principals, the Agency of Education and the Department of Health to ensure the health and safety of all our students, staff and parents. Important updates and notices will be posted here as well as shared by principals of each school as it pertains to their community. Everyone can help by following the CDC preventative measures listed below.

Updates

Effective March 15: All Catholic schools will be closed March 17-April 15. The situation will be monitored and adjusted as warranted.

Information from Agency of Education: The Agency of Education has created a website where they are housing the most up to date information regarding the virus and schools in Vermont.  Click here to access the site.

Click for Vermont Department of Health

 

 

Preventative Measures to Stop the Spread

Many of the precautions that help prevent other respiratory diseases, like colds and the flu, can also help keep an illness like COVID-19 from spreading:

  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with your sleeve or a tissue. Throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Click for more information from the CDC.

Prayer

Photo Credit: CNS/Paul Haring – Pope Francis recites the rosary at the Shrine of Our Lady of Divine Love in Rome in this 2018 file photo. On March 11, 2020, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, he entrusted the world to Mary.

Pope’s Prayer to Mary for a protection during the coronavirus pandemic

O Mary,

you always shine on our path

as a sign of salvation and of hope.

We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick,

who at the cross took part in Jesus’ pain, keeping your faith firm.

You, Salvation of the Roman People,

know what we need,

and we are sure you will provide

so that, as in Cana of Galilee,

we may return to joy and to feasting

after this time of trial.

Help us, Mother of Divine Love,

to conform to the will of the Father

and to do as we are told by Jesus,

who has taken upon himself our sufferings

and carried our sorrows

to lead us, through the cross,

to the joy of the resurrection. Amen.

Under your protection, we seek refuge, Holy Mother of God. Do not disdain the entreaties of we who are in trial, but deliver us from every danger, O glorious and blessed Virgin.