ADVISORY FOR OUR PARISH CONCERNING THE CORONA-VIRUS
Dear Parish Members and friends,
The health and best interests of our parishioners are always front and center in our minds. As the Church, the Body of Christ, we are dedicated to developing and improving spiritual health. However, The Armenian Church at Hye Pointe takes the physical health of our Parishioners – and the health of all friends, visitors, staff, and volunteers – very seriously. Therefore, we are writing in response to the current situation with COVID-19 (coronavirus).
Below you will find the Diocesan Advisory for all Parishes.
The following measures will be in effect immediately and continue until Holy Thursday (April 9, 2020).
1. From now until Holy Thursday, clergy will conduct most of the prescribed liturgical services, including the Holy Badarak. However, no one except clergy will be permitted to enter the church during services. Clergy will pray and worship on behalf of all of us. We undertake this measure in order to abide by the increasing number of municipal, state, and federal regulations restricting public gatherings of even small numbers of people, and to minimize the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus.
2. For the time being, baptisms will only be conducted in emergency cases, where the child is seriously ill. Marriage ceremonies will not be conducted. For funerals, only the graveside service will be conducted. Families of the deceased are asked to limit the number of people attending the graveside service, and are urged not to organize large memorial meals.
3. Our people should be aware that in most municipalities, clergy have been prohibited from entering hospitals and nursing homes. On the urging of experts in the health professions, I have also directed our clergy to refrain from home visitations for the time being. We encourage the faithful to be in contact with clergy via phone and social media, whereby they will always be ready to speak and pray with you.
4. In consideration of the above measures, I am asking our people to check in regularly by phone and social media on vulnerable people in our communities: the elderly, the sick, single parents, recent immigrants, and others that need support.
5. His Holiness Karekin II has proclaimed Wednesday, March 18, to be a worldwide Day of Prayer in the Armenian Church. At precisely 7 p.m. tomorrow, we are all asked to take that moment in the privacy of our homes, and offer our personal prayers to Almighty God. The Catholicos asks us to pray for all those who have been affected by the COVID-19 virus, among our people and throughout the world, and especially for all who are putting themselves in harm’s way in order to treat the sick and assure the continuation of basic services.
Other Steps include
1. If you have cold or flu symptoms, please stay home. 2.Wash your hands correctly and more than you usually do. 3.We need to be in contact with our elderly parishioners and shut-ins to ensure that they are safe and help provide any needs they may have, such as food, supplies, etc.
Please share this information with all those parishioners who don’t have email. Let's all remain vigilant and safe and pray for everyone affected by the coronavirus and a speedy resolution toward a cure.
Prayerfully, Der Vart and Parish Council