From Fr. Bill – 24 / 25 October 2020
Many people of faith were very disappointed that the easing of restrictions in Melbourne, announced last Sunday by the Premier, did not include any meaningful steps towards a return to our places of worship. The doors of our churches, synagogues, temples and mosques remain firmly closed and there are no signs of hope in them opening up any time soon.
While the Government is to be commended for its efforts to keep people safe, especially those most vulnerable, and the suppression of the virus that has been achieved during this lockdown, there is a sense among people of faith that we are not being treated fairly or on parity with other sectors of the community. Parity with other sectors seems denied even when we reach “Covid normal”. The spectre of our places of worship remaining closed leaves our people feeling exiled and pushed outside.
Gathering outside for Mass in tiny groups of five, looking at locked doors, is pretty hard to explain when driving or walking to Mass you pass by local cafés not just open but with people milling around outside enjoying their café latte’s without masks, social distancing, contact tracing or sanitiser.
Our church communities have worked closely with the Government and the Health Department to be safe and responsible—with Covid-Safe plans in place for each church. The Health Department tell us that religious worship is an inherently higher risk than other sectors. How is 30 people swimming in a pool safer than pouring baptismal water over the head of one infant? How is eating and drinking in a pub or restaurant (unmasked) safer than a small congregation, masked, sanitised, temperature checked and appropriately spaced within churches that are larger than many pubs or eateries? None of this passes the “pub test” when it comes to places of worship remaining closed.
I understand why the Government is hesitant to go against the recommendations of the Health Department but if the Department is so convinced places of worship are more inherently risky than shopping centres like Northland, supermarkets, pubs, restaurants and swimming pools then there needs to be some transparency and we need to be shown the data and the rationale so that we can sit down together and discuss a way forward.
We have no desire to undermine restrictions that protect life, nor do we wish to stoop to the carping and strident abuse of those who are happy to undermine public safety for their own agenda. But people of faith do deserve to be treated fairly and given hope in seeing a way forward.
The above is my personal adaptation of a meeting between the Archbishop and his priests at our weekly Zoom meeting together with excerpts from a media release by the Archbishop.
Parish Priest: Fr. Bill Edebohls
Office Administrator: Teana McIntosh
Parish Postal Address: PO Box 319, Ivanhoe 3079
Parish Office: 56 Wilfred Rd, Ivanhoe East 3079
Presbytery: 63 Wilfred Rd, Ivanhoe East 3079
Phone: 9926 2310
Mobile: 0427 879 733
Prayer@Home resources for this week.
A: Use the links at the top of the page or paste these links into your browser.
Our online Parish Mass for each Sunday will be available by noon each Saturday
This weekend’s edition of the Parish Newsletter and Homily
Family Prayer (Praying with your Children at Home)
B. Sunday 11.00am Mass from St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Channel 31 (which is channel 44 on most digital TVs.
C. Angelus & Coffee together over Zoom Coming together on our computers and tablets each Tuesday morning at 10.30am to say the Angelus, read the Gospel, pray together and share our stories while catching up over a coffee. If you are interested in joining contact Ivanhoe@cam.org.au and we will forward the link
D. Weekly Message from our Archbishop and for more news from the Archdiocese go to: https://melbournecatholic.org.au
In this week’s Newsletter
Latest News and News from the Wider Church HERE
Keeping in Touch
Do You Need Help
We have people happy to assist with the delivery of our Newsletters, groceries and other necessities. If you are vulnerable, cannot get out, or access services please phone or email the parish office Ivanhoe@cam.org.au
How Covid-19 Restrictions continue to affect you & your Parish!
Fr. Bill Edebohls
PLEASE NOTE CHANGE OF OUR MAILING ADDRESS & PHONE NUMBER
Mary Mother of the Church
Catholic Parish Ivanhoe
Office: 56 Wilfred Rd Ivanhoe East
Mail: PO Box 319 Ivanhoe 3079
Phone: 03 9926 2310
Presbytery: 63 Wilfred Rd Ivanhoe East 3079
Phone: 0427 879 733
As a Catholic Community we respect the Wurrundjeri people, traditional custodians of the land upon which our parish resides, and commit ourselves to reconciliation and justice for all in our community and nation.
Our Parish is committed to the safety, wellbeing and dignity of all children and vulnerable adults.
For Local, National and International faith-related News, Information and Opinions see 'News 2020' page Here
The Parish Office is located at 4 Waverley Avenue Ivanhoe 3079
Parish Priest: Fr Bill Edebohls: 63 Wilfred Rd East Ivanhoe. Tel. 0427 879 733