COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus)
Come visit and keep watch with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament! More than ever, Jesus is calling us to join Him in prayer as we continue to pray for our families and loved ones, and for an end to this horrible pandemic. Beginning this Monday, May 11th , we will be unlocking our doors (west entrance only) to our chapel every day from 6:00 AM to 10:00 PM. The Blessed Sacrament will not be exposed, so there is no need to sign up for an hour. For your safety and that of others, please wear a mask and disinfect your hands (hand sanitizer available in the back of the chapel) immediately upon arriving in the chapel and before departing in order to prevent spreading any possible infection onto the door handles of the west entrance.
Disinfectant spray bottles will be available in the back of the chapel. Please spray down your entire seat before you leave and allow it to dry on its own. No need to wipe it down. Due to the fact that the interior chapel doors will remain propped open, and out of respect to other adorers, we ask that you please keep a spirit of silence while in and outside the chapel area and that, for your safety and the safety of others, there be no congregating within or outside the chapel.
We have really missed your prayerful presence and we are so excited to have you back in our chapel to pray. Let us all continue to pray for each other and for our parishes. Jesus, Mary and Joseph, pray for us!
Dear Parishioners of St. Gerald,
Warm greetings to all you and your families. It is so refreshing to see that Spring has finally arrived and that many people are able to get out with their families and friends to enjoy the beautiful weather, especially after being so confined the last month and a half. I want to thank you for all your encouraging cards, emails, and food, etc. you have sent me and our leadership team and staff. I also want to thank those of you who have volunteered so much of your time and energy to assist us in these difficult times. Most especially, I want to thank you for your continued prayers and financial support. Your loving and generous support enables us not only to survive as a church and school, but, more importantly, it enables us to continue to thrive and grow as a faith-filled community whose mission is to make disciples of others through a deeper and transforming encounter with the risen Lord!
As you know, Gov. Ricketts recently announced plans/guidelines for reopening businesses in Nebraska on May 4th. The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services has issued updated Directed Health Measures that affect churches. These changes go into effect on Monday, May 4. We have also received guidelines and safety measures from Archbishop Lucas that we must enforce when we reopen our churches for the celebration of Masses and Sacraments. This complete document can be found at https://archomaha.org/guidelines-and-safety-measures-as-ofmay-4/.
In this document, Archbishop Lucas informs us that “the dispensation from the Sunday and Holy Day Mass obligation remains in force.” We are also told that “pastors are responsible for the safety of those who attend liturgies.” As your pastor, I take this responsibility very seriously. Since we received the document from Archbishop Lucas last Saturday, I have consulted with our Liturgy Committee, Leadership Team, and several other leaders of our parish, and a number of pastors in Omaha to determine the logistical needs and procedures that will allow us to return to Mass in the safest and most orderly way possible. The pastors of our deanery also met Wednesday afternoon and we, like many other local pastors, felt very strongly that we need to take a “wait and see” approach before reopening our churches for the safety and well-being of our parishioners. Based on the advice and recommendations I received, and like many other of our local pastors, I have made the difficult decision that we will not be reopening our church for the celebration of the Mass on May 4. Our hope and prayer, however, is that we will reopen our church in the next two to four weeks - provided that there are no new serious outbreaks of COVID-19 following the reopening of businesses in the state of Nebraska, especially in Omaha and the surrounding areas, and that it is safe for our parishioners to return. In the meantime, Masses, devotions, etc. will continue to be live-streamed and all other procedures will remain in place until further notice.
Please know that you and your families are in our thoughts and prayers daily. We miss you and we love you all very much, and we long for that day we can see your smiling faces once again!☺ Please keep me, Fr. Michael, our parish leadership, and all those on our church and school staff in your daily prayers as well. Let us also continue to pray for those in our parish who are unemployed and for those who are most vulnerable, and especially those who have been infected by this horrible virus. Most importantly, let us keep our eyes on the risen Lord who is with us always as our Good Shepherd, and who continues to lead us and protect us.
Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, pray for us!
Sincerely in Christ,
Coronavirus Confession Procedure
Saturday 3:00 to 4:30 PM
Simply come to church at 96th & Q during any of the scheduled times, no signup is required. For Confession, please enter the parking lot through the east
entrance only where a parking attendant will give you written instructions and direct you where to park.
As you wait in line please remain in your vehicle. Please do not leave your vehicles to visit with others present in the parking area. The line of vehicles will be directed toward the drop off zone at the front entrance of the church where you will be asked to park temporarily until you have completed your confession. Please do not leave your vehicles for Confession until you are directed to do so by a parking attendant.
Penitents will then be ushered into the Fellowship Hall and directed to a waiting area one
at a time. While waiting in the waiting area inside we ask that you remain a minimum of 6 ft away from anyone else to respect the social distancing requirement. Confessions will only be offered behind a screen for safety purposes.
When you have finished Confession it is absolutely critical that you return to your vehicle immediately
to depart so that the vehicles behind you can then move forward to allow others to move forward to receive Confession. For the safety of your health and others, please do not congregate with others present or visit with others or go into the church to complete your penance. You will have to do your penance at home/work or on your way home/work. Your cooperation is deeply appreciated.
Tracking Down the Origin of the Wuhan Coronavirus
The first documentary movie on CCP virus:
Holy Week Message from Archbishop Lucas
Update on April 2, 5:30pm
Surrendering to Jesus Novena, Palm pickup for Palm Sunday, Seeking Truth Bible Study free for a limited time, confession times, Oasis Prayer Gathering and other live streams, make your donations online.
View FlockNote for Details
Distribution of Blessed Palms and Holy Water
We will plan to distribute blessed palms on Saturday morning, April 4 from 10am-noon and 6-7pm at 96th & Q, and also on Sunday morning, April 5th from 11am-noon. This will be handled in the same respect as bringing your Sunday offerings. Drive up and palms will be brought to your car. You can get palms at the west chapel door entrance and also in front of the church in the drive through lane.
For those wishing to have Holy Water available in your homes, there is Holy Water available in the courtyard by the Fellowship Hall doors at 96th & Q. Please limit to water size bottle container so that all may partake.
Update on March 28, 7:41pm
Mass and holy water, urgent plea for financial assistance, confession schedule, help needed contacting our elderly parishioners, help us reach 1000 subscribers on YouTube.
View FlockNote for Details
Update on March 27, 10:14am
Thank you for taking a moment to watch this urgent video regarding the current financial status of St. Gerald’s Church and School. In Christ, Fr. Mark Nolte
Would You Help Check-in on Our Elders?
Though many of our older parishioners are self-sufficient and may have children who are checking on them, some may need your help.
Go to the sign-up genius (click here)
to help with either of the following:
1) Make phone calls. Be a friendly voice and see if they have any needs.
2) Run errands such as getting groceries and medicine. This is something whole families, college students and teens could do to serve.
Sign Up To Help
Pope Francis imparts Urbi et Orbi blessing amid coronavirus pandemic
Holy Virgin of Guadalupe,
Queen of the Angels and Mother of the Americas.
We fly to you today as your beloved children.
We ask you to intercede for us with your Son,
as you did at the wedding in Cana.
Pray for us, loving Mother,
and gain for our nation and world,
and for all our families and loved ones,
the protection of your holy angels,
that we may be spared the worst of this illness.
For those already afflicted,
we ask you to obtain the grace of healing and deliverance.
Hear the cries of those who are vulnerable and fearful,
wipe away their tears and help them to trust.
In this time of trial and testing,
teach all of us in the Church to love one another and to be patient and kind.
Help us to bring the peace of Jesus to our land and to our hearts.
We come to you with confidence,
knowing that you truly are our compassionate mother,
health of the sick and cause of our joy.
Shelter us under the mantle of your protection,
keep us in the embrace of your arms,
help us always to know the love of your Son, Jesus. Amen.
Update on March 20, 6:46pm
Confession schedule through April 4, Oasis Gathering live on Friday evenings, tithing drop off times after live streaming masses and other ways to continue to financially support your parish at this time.
View FlockNote For More Detail
A Message From Archbishop Lucas
Update on March 19, 7:29am
Oasis prayer gathering streaming live this Friday at 7:00pm. Free salad and pasta sauce donated from a local restaurant for pickup starting Friday at 2:00pm.
Join us, Pope Francis, and the world in praying the rosary live today at 3:00pm. Help with calling and reaching out to the elders of our parish. Details on all this and more in our latest eNewsletter FlockNote update.
View FlockNote For More Detail
Update on March 16, 8:57pm
Dear People of St. Gerald Church,
You may have heard that the governor has required that there be no more than 10 people at any gathering. Archbishop Lucas has asked that this be followed within the context of our parishes too. Due to Mass attendance limitations, we will not be gathering inside the churches for Mass. Instead, we hope that you can join us for our live-stream of Masses on your phone, tablet, or computer.
Tomorrow (Tuesday) at 12:15 PM you can participate by going to stgerald.org/live
(Note: Tomorrow's 8:15 AM Mass is canceled.)
(We are planning to live-stream future weekday Masses and weekend Masses too. More details will follow later this week.)
Our goal is to set-up ways for everyone to still engage with their brothers and sisters in Christ. We are working on how this will all work and will provide more details in the days to come.
Though this is one of the more significant trials our world has experienced in recent times, we have a tremendous opportunity to grow in our faith and dependence on the Lord Jesus.
We Love You!
St. Gerald Pastors, Staff, and Pastoral Council
Update on March 14, 1:57pm
Lots of communications are going around with frequent updates to the precautions our community is taking with the coronavirus concerns. Before going any further, let us remember that God is not the author of fear or anxiety. It's important that we join in prayer, asking the Lord to bring peace to our hearts and minds and healing to our world.
You may have seen or heard that we had an individual from St. Gerald's being tested for the coronavirus. We have received news of the test results and this individual does NOT have the coronavirus.
Masses will continue as scheduled, but the Archbishop has granted a dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass if you feel that your safety or the safety of your loved ones are at risk in any way. If you choose to act on the dispensation, you are encouraged to attend a weekday Mass where there are fewer people in attendance (but you are not obliged to do so).
Per Father Mark
- The president and our governor have declared national and state emergencies. Based on the directives from the governor and our archbishop, please refer to the following bullet points.
Canceled or postponed
- If you feel sick or you are concerned for your health or that of others, please stay home.
- We will follow the state and archdiocesan guidelines in having no more than 250 people in a particular gathering at the church (includes all Masses).
- The Fellowship Hall will be opened to accommodate this as well as encouraging the congregation to spread out in the main church, chapel and hall.
- Our Mass schedule is the same for now. You may consider attending a less attended Mass like 7AM, 8AM or 12PM. The schedule may change as the need arises, such as adding a Mass. For information about a live stream video for Masses, go to stgerald.org/live
- There will not be holy water in the fonts. The priest and deacon will bless the congregation at the beginning of Mass.
- Still continuing with no physical contact for greetings and sign of peace as well as distribution of Precious Body only.
- Regarding the reception of Holy Communion, it is recommended that people receive the Consecrated Host in their hands, not on the tongue. If one chooses to still receive on the tongue, you may receive from the priest line only.
- The reconciliation schedule will continue; 2 priests on Saturdays during Lent
- Collection will be taken up at all the exits of the church at the end of Mass.
Message from Fr. Mark
- All school classes, extracurriculars, and athletics, the week of March 16
- All large social gatherings until further notice (250 people or more)
- Smaller group gatherings may continue at the discretion of the group
- All fish dinners until further notice (directive of Health Dept. and archdiocese)
- Men's Club Trivia Night for Saturday, March 14
- Be Healed Book Study until further notice
- The Parish Mission that was set to take place March 15-18
- Stewardship Fair is postponed
- Thanks for everyone's patience and cooperation during these turbulent times. Let us all take advantage of this time and unite as a community and pray and offer these sacrifices up to the Lord for the salvation of our world. Be at peace.... God is in control even when it may seem otherwise
Jesus, We Trust in You!
Fr. Mark and the St. Gerald Servant Leadership Team
During the coronavirus outbreak concern it has been decided to suspend the distribution of the Precious Blood at all Masses. We will also be refraining from any bodily contact for the opening greeting and sign of peace. Please feel free to share verbal greetings. This is a temporary precaution due to the general spread of germs associated with the coronavirus and general influenza.
The Archdiocese of Omaha has put together a web page with the latest information and precautions being taken... click here
. Archbishop Lucas asks that Catholics throughout the Archdiocese of Omaha pray for the intercession of St. Joseph during this time of uncertainty due to the spread of the coronavirus, and especially on his feast day, March 19. Click here
and pray an intercessory prayer to St. Joseph.
Panic vs. Perfect Love