Even in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, the parish community of St. Mark in Burlington is moving forward with plans for a new ministry to support those who are ill or alone and in need of prayers.

The Illness Support Ministry, which grew out of the priorities of the 2018 Diocesan Synod, is meant to reach out to anyone who contacts the parish for prayers in the face of sickness, or those who are homebound or in nursing homes.

Often, those who contact the parish may not even be parishioners, said Barry Comeau, parish synod delegate.

One of the primary goals, Comeau explained, is to create an information card for those in need of prayers, which would include addresses, contact information and names of family members, if possible; anything that would make connecting with the sick possible, especially during this time when visits are restricted because of Covid-19.

The committee of six volunteers, who have been hampered by the pandemic in their efforts to gather, is currently deciding on uplifting prayers and messages of support to be mailed to the sick, and to family members in some cases, to let them know they are being prayed for and remembered.

— Originally published in the Winter 2020 issue of Vermont Catholic magazine.