From Bishop Noonan
During this time of Lent, I turn to our Lord, Jesus, who is the leader of our world and our guide. I ask our entire community of faith to pray for those already diagnosed with disease and sickness, no matter the source, and for those who are suffering at the hand of injustice and disregard for their sacred being. Let us not fall prey to fear; but, seek the courage of Jesus as He began the walk from Jerusalem to Calvary.
-Most Reverend John Nooonan, Bishop of the Diocese of Orlando
We turn to Mary, Mother of God, our Patronness, and pray the prayer which Pope Francis offered on March 11:
you always shine on our path
as a sign of salvation and of hope.
We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick,
who at the cross took part in Jesus’ pain, keeping your faith firm.
You, Salvation of the Roman People,
know what we need,
and we are sure you will provide
so that, as in Cana of Galilee,
we may return to joy and to feasting
after this time of trial.
Help us, Mother of Divine Love,
to conform to the will of the Father
and to do as we are told by Jesus,
who has taken upon himself our sufferings
and carried our sorrows
to lead us, through the cross,
to the joy of the resurrection.
Under your protection, we seek refuge, Holy Mother of God.
Do not disdain the entreaties of we who are in trial,
but deliver us from every danger, O glorious and blessed Virgin. Amen.
This is a compilation of a number of correspondence between Bishop Noonan and the priests of the Diocese of Orlando, prepared for the faithful on March 13, 2020.
Florida Catholic Digital Edition
There will be no print editions of the Florida Catholic for the month of April. Instead, Florida Catholic will offer the digital editions of the paper free of charge. Visit https://thefloridacatholic.org/ each week to stay on top of news during this ongoing, global crisis.
Message from Daniel Boyd, Secretary for Laity, Family and Life on Suspension of Religious Education Classes
April 8, 2020
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Peace be with you and happy Easter! I pray that the joy of the Risen Lord is sustaining you during this most difficult time. Thank you to our parents, catechists, parish catechetical leaders, religious, deacons, and priests who have continued passing on the faith of Jesus Christ to His little ones (Matt 19:14). This is Daniel Boyd, Secretary for Laity, Family and Life and I wanted to share an update with you regarding parish catechesis.
From the beginning of our efforts to respond prudently to the coronavirus pandemic, we have sought the best way to protect families and vulnerable members of our community. As a continuation of these efforts, we are recommending that parishes move all catechetical efforts from in-person to virtual for the remainder of the catechetical year. This decision is in concert with the Office of Catholic Schools decision to suspend in-person Catholic education for the remainder of the year, as both Superintendent Fortier and I thought that this was the best course of action to ensure that we are fulfilling our duty of evangelizing while working towards the common good.
Please be assured of our prayers for you as you continue working to hand out the faith to God’s precious children.
Daniel Boyd, Ed. D
Ministry to the Sick
For even if I am absent in the flesh, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing as I observe your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ.
In the parable of the good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37), Jesus gives us a model of compassionate care for those who are suffering. As Catholics, we are inspired by this and similar passages to visit those who are sick and suffering, bringing them the most holy Eucharist and offering consolation and friendship.
As care facilities change their policies to safeguard the people they serve, we will encounter an opportunity to be creative in how we minister to and accompany our brothers and sisters in Christ. When we are unable to be physically present, we can still find ways to connect with, listen to, console, and be in solidarity with one another.
This may include preemptively obtaining contact information, when allowed, to be able to call and offer support over the phone or to write and send letters and cards. You may also want to share your contact information and ask others to save it into their phone or device, so they recognize you when you call. We can also familiarize ourselves with video calls and assistive devices for those with unique hearing or vision abilities.
As always, we encourage you to prayerfully and prudently discern how God is calling you to carry out the Gospel. As we consider the common good, the Church reminds us to consider both “respect for the person” and “social well-being” (CCC, 1907-8).
Behavioral Health Services
The outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) may be stressful for people. Fear and anxiety about a disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. (CDC: coronavirus disease 2019).
Click here to learn more.