My Dear People of God of St. John – Long Green Valley,
I write this letter as a means of reaching out to all parishioners and to reinforce the importance of faith community during this health crisis. The staff and parish leadership of St. John the Evangelist Church are diligently seeking ways for parishioners to stay connected as a community, find spiritual nourishment, and carry on in ministry.
I am sure you feel as I do, the great sadness of this time. Many of us have never experienced such a situation before in our lives. We are reminded during times like this that we are brothers and sisters with one another, and as the world faces COVID-19 (Coronavirus), we come to understand that the world cannot be separated from our doorstep. If we are not able to make the sacrifice of gathering for Mass at this critical time, we can know that through our sacrifice, we are helping to save lives – perhaps not down the street – but in the neighboring city or state or country. We are brothers and sisters!
I offer daily Mass in private, praying for the protection of all families of St. John from the contagion of COVID-19. Let us hold each other in prayer, remain committed to one another as a parish, and keep connected.
Please see the information following this letter, which provides details about our parish, what we are able to offer to you, and how you can help during this critical time.
I would ask your kindness in thought, word, and prayer for our Archbishop, William E. Lori. The decision to cancel Masses until further notice has been the most difficult of his life, and he does not take it lightly. He is our Shepherd, given to us by Christ, and we are called to follow his voice as we would that of Jesus – the Good Shepherd.
We started last Sunday to bring the celebration of the Mass from our Church, St. John the Evangelist in Long Green Valley, via Facebook into the sanctuary of your homes. It was indeed a great success, for we have more than 4K who viewed the Mass with our parishioners. The Act of Spiritual Communion Prayer was particularly included so that you can prayerfully express your desire to receive Jesus in the Eucharist. Considering our limitation, this prayer satisfies our Communion with the Lord even without the actual reception of His body and blood. For this short window, we stand in solidarity with you.
And what a glorious celebration it will be when we celebrate Mass again together and receive the Eucharist – renewed in our appreciation and understanding of the gift that the Eucharist is for us!
May the Lord bless you and keep you in His care.
Yours in Christ,
Rev. Pete D. Literal, Pastor
STAY CONNECTED TO ST. JOHN
Please connect with us through:
- Voicemail – Call 410-592-6206. You may leave a message in the general voicemail box or in staff members’ voicemail boxes. There is also an emergency option for urgent needs.
- Flocknotes – If you’re not already receiving email/text updates, sign up at www.flocknote.com/sjehydes or text “SJEHYDES” to 84576
- Parish Website – www.sjehydes.org
- Social Media – Follow us on Facebook to read our latest posts and watch livestreamed Mass on Sundays at 9 AM: www.facebook.com/st.john.hydes, and follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/StJohnLongGreen.
- myParish App – You can download the app by searching for “MyParish” on your phone’s app store
- Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
We are still serving our brothers and sisters in Christ and neighbors in need.
- Sunday Masses – Livestreamed Mass in our St. John the Evangelist Church is held at 9 AM on Sundays. While this is not for the public, you may participate through the “St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church (Hydes, MD)” Facebook page.
- Food Pantry – You can drop off food for our pantry (in desperate need!) at the Narthex of the Church, Monday through Friday between 8 AM – 12 Noon. Please use the left-most front entrance door to the church to access the narthex. The Knights of Columbus will also be collecting non-perishable food on Friday, March 27 from 10 AM – 2 PM in the Knights’ Hall.
- Outreach: Parishioners Helping Parishioners – We’re connecting by phone with our senior members (ages 70+), checking in on their well-being and if they need any assistance (shopping, etc.). Several volunteers of the parish are willing to shop for your food or medication.
- Private Prayer or Devotion – The church will be unlocked for private prayer from 8 AM – 12 PM weekdays. We must strictly adhere to the mandate that no more than 10 people be in the building at once.
- Prayer Intentions – You may continue to send us via email your prayer intentions that you would normally write in the Parish Book of Intentions. Send an email to email@example.com to submit your prayer request.
- Sacraments – Sacraments continue for anointing, funerals, or weddings, etc. but are limited to immediate family members, groups of no more than 10 at a time.
- Holy Week Celebration will be via livestreaming. You can join the celebration by following on the St. John Facebook page.
Weekly Offertory Needs
As Pastor, I worry about how the disruption and cancellation of our Sunday Masses have financially affected the parish during this unprecedented time. Even though you are not able to attend Mass, I pray and hope that you will still support St. John the Evangelist Church through your weekly offertory contribution.
You can drop your contribution off at the parish through the mail slot on the front door of the parish office, make your gift online at https://www.osvonlinegiving.com/758 or mail to:
St. John the Evangelist Church
13305 Long Green Pike
Hydes, MD 21082
Thank you for your ongoing support.
We truly appreciate all of you and pray for you each day.