COVID Restrictions - FAQs

FAQS -      updated 27/7/2021

 

The following Guidelines below to assist with questions pertaining to specific areas of liturgy and ministry COVID restrictions: As of 11.59pm, Tuesday 27th July 2021.

Religious Gatherings and Ceremonies:  Permitted for up to 100 people indoors and up to 300 people outdoors. Density quotient of 1 person per 4 sqm applies.

Face Coverings: Face masks: must be worn inside and outdoors everywhere except your own home.

Funerals (indoor and outdoor): Permitted with no more than 50 people (and those necessary to conduct the funeral). Children under 12 months old are not counted towards this cap.

Weddings (indoor and outdoor): Permitted with no more than 50 people (including the two persons being married and two witnesses. The celebrant and photographer are not included in the cap.) 

COVID Check-in Marshals must ensure attendees check-in.

Under no circumstances should anyone awaiting a COVID-19 test verification, including Clergy (even without presenting symptoms) attend a church or parish setting until a diagnosis is confirmed. Additionally, under no circumstances should anyone attend who is closely connected to people who are awaiting test results or who have tested positive. 


 

The Confirmation Retreat Wednesday 28th July: 

We encourage all Confirmation Candidates to attend the retreat as there will be an opportunity for Reconciliation and rehearsal for the Confirmation ceremony. Due to COVID restrictions the ceremony will be celebrated differently than previous ceremonies.
Confirmation retreat will be held for Religious Education Students and High School students tomorrow Wednesday 28th July, please arrive at the parish hall 8.00am. Retreat starts at 8.30am -2.45pm. BYO LUNCH. For St. Agatha's and St. Therese's School Students, Confirmation retreats will be conducted on your schools’ campus, respectively. Please arrive at school as usual.


Confirmation Ceremonies: 

We are pleased to announce that Bishop Greg Bennet will be celebrating the Confirmation Ceremonies as scheduled this Thursday 29th July at 4.30pm and 6.30pm and Friday 30th July at 4.30pm and 6.30pm as scheduled.
We would love to have all family members attend the ceremonies as planned but unfortunately due to COVID restrictions this will not be possible.
Our primary goal is the safety of the children and their families.
We will be strictly complying with the religious ceremony capacity limit of 100 people.

Due to unforeseen circumstance and such late notice we have just been informed by [DOSCEL] Diocese of Sale Catholic Education Limited for the safety of the school children that we are no longer able to use the school hall for all Confirmation ceremonies.
We can only have 1 Candidate, 1 Sponsor and 1 Parent in the Church due to our capacity limits, we can allow the other parent in the parish hall.
Our utmost priority is to get the children confirmed in the safest way possible.
We are so very sorry for any inconvenience and stress that this may cause and ask for your understanding, during these difficult times.

Please arrive early, as the doors will be closed 15 minutes before the Mass begins.

Face masks must be worn at all times, you must QR code on arrival.
We request that you do not gather outside the Church or hall after the ceremony but go straight to your car.
We thank you for your understanding and patience.

 Permission forms have been emailed, please return ASAP

 

If you decide not to go ahead with your child’s Confirmation this year and wish to wait for next years ceremonies please contact the parish office.

Under no circumstances should anyone awaiting a COVID-19 test verification, including Clergy (even without presenting symptoms) attend a church or parish setting until a diagnosis is confirmed. Additionally, under no circumstances should anyone attend who is closely connected to people who are awaiting test results or who have tested positive. 

 Adoration Chapel:    3 people at a time, 4 sqm rule QR code

• Masses will continue to be livestreamed Monday to Saturday at 9.30am and Sunday at 9.00am

How can I continue to make my offering to the Church Stewardship & Presbytery collections?

St Agatha's Catholic Church, like all Places of Worship, in Victoria Metropolitan area have been closed and now open to limited numbers.

Due to COVID restrictions we have not been receiving our usual donations, collections and Stewardship offering envelopes. These funds are used to help with the everyday running of the Parish.

We understand and appreciate that many generous people may no longer be in a position to contribute to collections due to the impact of COVID19 crisis on their family.

For those who would like to continue their contributions to St Agatha's Parish or to make a donation, you can do so by Electronic Funds Transfer or Credit Card or we can set up a Direct Debit from your account  To download the form NAB Direct Debit & Credit Card Authority

Our banking details are:

FIRST COLLECTION OR DONATIONS

For Donations, Stewardship Giving & Mass Offerings please credit the

Church Account:
Account Name: St Agathas Parish
BSB: 083-879 Account No: 489181088
So we can identify your deposit please use one of the following references:

For Donations: Surname Donation
For Stewardship: Stewardship number and name i.e. Smith PG 723
Loose Collection: B Smith Church Coll
Mass Offerings: Name of Offering & date of Mass i.e. Henry 4 May

(Mass Offerings can be booked by contacting the Parish Office at least one week prior)

SECOND COLLECTION

For donations to the Second Collection, which supports the Priests & Presbytery please credit the

Presbytery Account
Account Name: St Agathas Presbytery
BSB: 083-879 Account No: 367718393
Please put the following reference on your transfer - Surname Pres Coll

We thank you in advance for supporting our parish community

Can I still offer a Mass? 

Masses can be offered for my intention or my loved ones.
At your request, a Mass can be offered for your intention. This can only be arranged by telephoning the parish office on 5996 1985 on Monday 1.00pm to 3.00pm or Tuesday to Friday between 8.30am – 3.00pm. Only Two Mass offerings taken per Mass, where possible we request you book at least one week in advance.
Please phone the parish office to book your Mass intention before paying with CDFpay online, Thank you.  

Sunday Obligation


The faithful can keep holy their Sunday by setting aside some time for prayer at home, reading the Scriptures of the day, watching Mass on television or online, and asking God for the graces they would normally receive in Holy Communion (canon 87 §1, canon 1248 §2)

Can I receive Holy Communion?


Yes you can receive Holy Communion at Mass.  If you are unable to attend Mass, you make Spiritual Holy Communion by participating in the online Mass. However, the priests are available to give Holy Communion to the dying as Viaticum.

What is an Act of Spiritual Communion and how do I make one?

Catholics have long been encouraged to partake in the practice of “spiritual communion” when extraordinary situation or distance make it almost impossible to physically receive the Holy Communion, (for instance – being homebound). Simply put, it is coming before the Lord in prayer – expressing our deep desire to be united to Him despite the fact that we are unable to be united to Him in receiving the Eucharist. In making an Act of Spiritual Communion we ask the Lord to give us the graces that would come to us if we were able to receive Him sacramentally (Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity). Reciting the prayer written by St. Alphonsus Liguori below is simple and common way of making an Act of Spiritual Communion.

How do I prepare for Spiritual Communion?

It is a matter of consciousness, preparation and an interior disposition.
The heart of a Spiritual Communion is to rest there in that special moment of desire and openness, reception and gratitude. It is a moment to be with Jesus, as he is with me. There is no need for words in that moment. A soul says "Amen" at peace. Our hearts express their gratitude in quiet but deep emotion.
In this time of crisis, Jesus longs to be in communion with us as we are longing to be in communion with him.

The way we prepare to receive Spiritual Communion with Jesus is very similar to the way we prepare to receive Jesus in the Eucharist. In these times, we might participate in a Mass on TV or on line.
If we can't do any of those, we might want to read the readings of the day.
If we are unable to do either of those, we might just prepare ourselves in the ways we'd prepare for Communion at Mass. It begins with an act of contrition or sorrow for my sins and a firm purpose of amendment (a change of heart and resolve to not continue that behavior or habit). It then moves to a desire, which we can put into words, telling our Lord how much we desire to receive him into our heart. We can tell him about our need for him at this time and of our gratitide for his desire to be with us. Finally, we can simply say what we say at Mass, "Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed."

An Act of Spiritual Communion

My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament.
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.

Anointing (or Last Rites)

Yes, a priest will still come to anoint the seriously ill in an emergency and dying.

Baptism Preparation Program

1st Sunday of the Month from 3.00pm to 5.00pm. Bookings through our Parish Website

Baptisms

Baptisms will be celebrated on Sunday at 12.30pm.

Bookings of up to five families per session. The Parish offers live streaming for Baptisms if you would like to know more information please contact the parish office. 

First Reconciliation 2021

Parent Information & Workshop sessions Wednesday 10th February 7.00pm & Thursday 18th February 7.00pm St Agatha's Scool Hall.  Parent/Child workshop Wednesday 3rd March at 5.00pm & 7.00pm or Thursday 4th March at 7.00pm.  [Parents need only attend one session]

First Communion 2021

Parent Information & Workshop sessions Wednesday 28th July 7.00pm via ZOOM link. To register go tohttps://forms.gle/qFjxxNCc2EzysjRw5 
Parent/Child workshop Wednesday 11th August at 5.00pm or 7.00pm.  [Parents need only attend one session]

Confirmation Ceremonies 2021 

Thursday 29th July at 4.30pm and 6.30pm and Friday 30th July at 4.30pm and 6.30pm. 

Confession/Reconciliation

Friday & Saturday after the 9.30am Mass. 

Can I go to Confession over the phone?

It is not possible to go to confession over the phone. Real presence is necessary in person, either face to face or in a screened booth. Privacy is of key importance to the sacrament of reconciliation to preserve the seal of confession – electronic communications lack this level of privacy.

Can I get Holy Water? - 

Holy Water is available from the Church foyer.

Can I receive a Birthday blessing? 

Birthday blessing are available, social distancing rules must be adhered too. 

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact the Parish Office 03 5996 1985.
All contributions will be greatly appreciated and will help meet the needs of our Parish.

We will try to continually update this page with questions and answers as they arise.
Thank you.

Calendar

11 Aug
First Communion - Parent & Child Workshop
Date 11.08.21 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
11 Aug
First Communion - Parent & Child Workshop
Date 11.08.21 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
12 Aug
First Communion - Parent & Child Workshop
Date 12.08.21 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm