Updates and how to sign up for Masses

 Update: May 28, 2020

Beginning this weekend, May 30-31, we will be streaming the Saturday and Sunday Masses over in the gym and bringing communion over there at the time for communion. We will divide people up as they arrive so we can keep the numbers to 25 or less in each space.  This means that we will have the capacity to have more people attending Mass. We will still need to follow the protocols that you will find in our “Mass Sign Up” instructions. We especially are encouraging people to wear masks and follow the strict social distancing. We are hoping that in the next couple of weeks our county will increase the numbers as we possibly enter into “phase II”. We will let you know when that is possible.

For those in Sheridan and Grand Ronde, we will have the May 31 Masses in Sheridan this weekend like we have had the last couple of weeks. We are not able to stream into another building because we don’t have internet nor the capability. We are hoping that we will be able to increase numbers in the next couple weeks when we potentially move to “Phase II”. Also, importantly, beginning June 7, we will be having Mass in Sheridan at 8:30am and Grand Ronde at 10:30am. For Grand Ronde, we will need to accommodate the sign ups according to spacing issues since the church is small. Fr. Joseph will not be available in June but coverage is arranged in both places and we are still planning to have First Communion on June 28.

Keep checking back because we should have changes coming in the next few weeks. Thank you for your patience.

 Update: May 6, 2020


Dear Parishioners,
The Mass is back! – Well, in a limited way.

Although we can attend the beautiful liturgy that we love, it comes with some restrictions. Please carefully read and follow the procedural steps provided below so we can have a safe, faith-filled, and joyful celebration.

Who should not come:
• Anyone who is elderly and/or compromised in health should not come.
• Anyone who is sick or showing any cold or flu like symptoms cannot come.
The dispensation from Mass by Archbishop Sample is still in effect and no one is required to come. We will also still stream the Sunday Masses and other events on the St. James McMinnville YouTube channel, and it will be linked from the St. James McMinnville Facebook page.

We will be providing Masses:
• At St. James (for its Parishioners only):
• Monday-Friday at 8:30am and 6pm (bilingual options)
• Saturday at 5pm (English) and 7pm (Spanish)
• Sunday at 9am and 10am (English)
• Sunday at 11am and 12pm (Spanish)

• At Good Shepherd in Sheridan (for Parishioners of Good Shepherd and St. Michael only):
• Masses at 8:30am and 10am on Sunday (English).

• Confessions are available by appointment only. Please email either Fr. Mike or Fr. Joseph to schedule it.

You are asked to:
• Keep a 6-foot distance from others at all time (family members can sit together).
• Sit in the assigned pews that have been sanitized and arranged for social distance.
• Do not touch your face or anything else that you don’t have to.
• Wear a mask if possible. If singing, it is required (only the two Saturday Masses sing)
• Only use the assigned restrooms when it is absolutely necessary.
• Plan to be at the church at least 5 minutes before Mass time to avoid traffic at the entrance.
• After Mass finishes, please leave soon to enable time for the next group.
• Each person, including family members, MUST sign-up in advance before coming to Mass.
• Because of limited numbers available, each household can only sign-up once a month. If more spaces become available, we will send an additional invitation
• Sign-up is online at https://signup.com/go/rVDLRUc
• We can’t take signups by phone messages, email, facebook messages, or texts.
• Because of the large numbers, please ask friends or family members first if you need assistance for signing up. As a last resort, you can call the parish office and we will try to assist you between 4pm-6pm (Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday) or between 10am-12pm (Wednesdays and Fridays).

Instructions for signing up a family:
To sign up your whole family, you will need to add family members individually on the site:
Initial signup with your name, email, and address.
After that click “save and add another person” for the next name.
In the next box, don’t put in an email, but do put in the same phone number.
Keep adding additional people until done.
Finally click “save and done” and it saves all the names.

We cannot accommodate drop ins. Failing to sign-up will result you being turned away. We have to follow the directives given by our Government and the Archdiocese in order to continue to celebrate Mass and potentially accommodate larger numbers in the future.

Prior instructions and limitations are still in effect until at least July 6 or if Governor Brown and/or the Archbishop remove restrictions.

It is so exciting to receive Jesus through the Word of God and Eucharist again. Let us praise God and continue to pray for an end to the pandemic and a full resumption of our normal schedule.

God bless you,

Fr. Mike Walker


Update: April 6, 2020:

Archbishop Sample has issued an extension of the suspension of all Masses until further notice. He also says he will reinstate public Masses at the soonest date possible following the recommendation of public health and other civic authorities. You can read his letter and dispensation here: https://files.constantcontact.com/6cb561fb001/653be26a-85e4-4808-b3a5-b6e33422b1f6.pdf

 Update: April 3, 2020:

As many of you know, late spring and early summer are times when we celebrate many sacraments including the Rites of Initiation, 1st Communion, and Confirmation. We were hoping we could follow the schedule that we had made in April and May, but it is increasingly likely that, because of our current situation, those dates will not be possible.  Therefore, we have postponed Confirmation, RCIA and RCIC Initiation, and 1st Communion.  We will notify you of any upcoming options when they are made available to us.

Update: March 25, 2020:

Starting Monday, Governor Brown put new regulations in place. This is the third time the regulations have been strengthened. In practice, however, it didn’t really change the decisions we had already made at the parish. But, for the sake of consistency, I think it would be a good idea to restate our current practices:

1.  Church meetings and activities are postponed until we can safely accomodate them.

2.  We are offering Masses and other content in various ways. We are streaming Masses and teachings on our YouTube Channel which can be accessed by searching for “St. James McMinnville” or by links in our facebook page “St. James McMinnville”.  In addition, be sure to visit the Archdiocesan website for updates and Masses and prayers offered by Archbishop Sample at: archdpdx.org

3. We encourage you to take advantage of online Catholic resources. Here are a few:
EWTN – The TV network with an online presence as well
Word on Fire – Bishop Barron’s site
Catholic TV – Daily Masses and other content
Vaticannews.va – Pope Francis Masses and other content
Vatican.va – Catechism, Pope’s letters, homilies, etc.
Vatican live stream – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJHI8bI0LWg
Universalis.com – Learn how to pray the Liturgy of the Hours
Theholyrosary.org – Learn to pray the rosary
Thedivinemercy.org – Learn to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet
Stpaulcenter.com – This and various Catholic study resources
Read the Bible – olivetree.com and biblegateway.com – look for Catholic Bibles
Read the Catechism – found on Vatican.va
Watch good religious movies: 10 Commandments, Scarlet and the Black, A Man for All Seasons, etc.

4. The office will be closed but we will be checking messages and doing what we need to. You are also free to email us. Our addresses can be found by clicking the “bulletin” icon on the home page of the parish website.

5. We will be following our already scheduled sacraments and events after Easter such as 1st Communion, Confirmation, Baptisms, etc. Since we don’t know what things will look like at this point, we may need to adjust as we get more information. We will let those involved know as soon as we do.

6. We will offer confessions but by appointment only so we can space the people. If you are looking to do a devotional confession or make a Lenten observance, this is not the time for that. If you are in a spiritual crisis, we will arrange the possibility. Just call or email to make an appointment.

7. Funerals and sick calls. They are possible but we are restricted in what we are able to offer. For funerals, if it is cremation, the funeral may be done at a later time if you have more than 10 people who would want to attend. For sick calls, we may not be allowed in nursing homes, hospitals, or foster care. We will respond as we are able. Just call the office or email.

8. Church Support: I know that there is a lot that is still unknown and many of you are rightfully concerned about your own financial situation. We are also concerned at St. James, Good Shepherd, and St. Michael as well. Although it is a delicate subject to bring this up, we do need your support as we have gone several weekends without collections. For Good Shepherd and St. Michael, please do your best to be generous when the time allows us to gather again. For St. James, if you go to the parish website, on the homepage you will find an icon “donation”. This enables online giving and there is a simple process for that to happen. Just follow the instructions.  You can also mail in your contributions or envelopes. Thank you for your understanding and support.

9. Spiritual Communion:
Finally, we can do our best to participate in Spiritual Communion by participating in the livestream Masses to the best of our ability and asking Jesus to unite himself with us. I’ll leave you with a prayer from St. Alphonsus Liguori:
My Jesus,
I believe that you
are present in the Word and 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.

II.  Guidelines to Prevent Spread of Virus:

  1. Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. All of our branches have these hand washing supplies on hand.
  2. Avoid close contact with people who show symptoms of sickness.
  3. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  4. Avoid touching your face – eyes, nose, and mouth.
  5. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces (doorknobs, counter tops, keyboards, cell phones, etc.)
  6. You are encouraged to stay home when you are ill and reach out to your care provider to determine the best way to seek treatment.