Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates at Gesu Parish

Updated 5/21/20
 

Masses will resume at Gesu beginning Tuesday, May 26, 2020. We ask that you please read Father Kiser's letter to parishioners, which details the specifics of resuming Mass at Gesu. The letter includes Mass times, precautions that we are asking all parishioners to take before and during Mass, changes to our liturgy during this time and information on the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

Read Fr. Kiser's full letter here >

Please keep in mind that the dispensation from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass continues until further notice. No one should attend Mass if you feel unsafe or at any health risk. This applies especially if you are elderly, have underlying medical conditions or care for young children. As an alternative to Sundays, you might consider attending a weekday Mass. Also, Gesu will continue to have Mass accessible on our website each week.

 

Updated 5/1/20

CONTINUED SUSPENSION OF MASS - In response to the Governor’s multi-phase strategy announced this past week to begin the process of gradually returning to work and daily activities, the Catholic Bishops of Ohio have extend the temporary suspension of all publicly celebrated Masses/liturgies ending on May 29th, with the hope of publicly celebrating together the Solemnity of Pentecost on the weekend of May 30/31. Each of the bishops of Ohio, once again, dispense the Catholic faithful who reside in their respective dioceses and all other Catholics currently in their territories from the obligation of attending Sunday Mass through the month of May. To read the letter from the Catholic Bishops of Ohio, please visit: https://uploads.weconnect.com/…/Bishop-Letter-April-28-2020….

CHURCH REOPENING FOR PRIVATE PRAYER - Beginning Monday, May 4, we are reopening the church during select hours for individual prayer. It will be unlocked Monday - Friday, 11:00 am - 7:00 pm. Access will be via the Thompson Lot entrance (near the Miramar driveway) next to the Church parking lot. All other doors will remain locked. We request a limit of 5 people at a time and ask that you adhere to the 6 ft. social distancing requirement. Upon entering the church, please proceed directly to the Family Restroom and wash your hands – we will leave the door open to avoid contact. Please wash your hands again as you exit. We have made available the first few rows of pews off the center aisle. Please use only this area or the Reservation Chapel (one person only) for prayer. All other areas of the Church should not be accessed including the Chapel, the Martyrs Shrine, the St. Anne Shrine, the Sanctuary or any other pews. The book and card rack area is also closed. Please do not bring food or drink into the Church.

SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION - You may contact one of the priests or call or email the Parish Office to make an appointment for the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Our priests are also available to provide spiritual counseling by phone. We are sorry that we are not currently able to offer anonymous confessions. If coming in person for confession, we ask that you please wear a mask.


Updated 4/3/20
 

The Catholic Bishops of Ohio have extended the temporary suspension of all publicly celebrated Masses/liturgies at least
through and including Sunday May 3rd. The Bishops of Ohio dispense the Catholic faithful who reside in their respective
dioceses and all other Catholics currently in Ohio from the obligation of attending Sunday Mass during this time period.

To read the full letter published by the Catholic Bishops of Ohio, click here >


Updated 3/23/20
 

Given Governor DeWine's recent "stay at home" declaration to reduce the spread of the coronavirus, for the safety and well-being of our parishioners, the Church building and Pastoral Center will be closed until further notice. We will continue to serve the parish to the best of our abilities.

  • We will continue to respond to emails and phone messages. Please don't hesitate to contact us.
  • A staff member will be answering the Parish Office phone from 11:00 am - 2:00 pm, Monday - Friday.
  • Please stay connected via the following sources: 
    • Gesu Parish website: churchofthegesu.org
    • Gesu Parish Facebook page: facebook.com/ChurchoftheGesu
    • Gesu Parish Twitter Page: @GesuCleveland
    • Gesu Bulletin: We will continue to publish an electronic version of our bulletin each week. You can find this on our homepage or receive a copy via email by subscribing at parishesonline.com. (Search Church of the Gesu in University Heights, OH and select subscribe.)

Updated 3/18/20

The following measures are being implemented as a directive from the Diocese of Cleveland (dioceseofcleveland.org/information-and-guidance) and for the health and well-being of our visitors and staff.

The Church will be open from 11:00 am - 7:00 pm daily. Access into the Church will be through the Thompson lot doors (near the Miramar driveway) next to the Church parking lot. The other doors will be locked. Upon entering the Church, please proceed directly to the Family Restroom (we will leave the door open to avoid contact) and wash your hands. We have made available the first few rows of pews off the center aisle. Please only use this space for prayer. All other areas of the Church should not be accessed including the Chapel, the Reservation Chapel, the Martyrs shrine, the St. Anne shrine, the sanctuary or any of the other pews. The book and card rack area is also closed. We ask that you adhere to the 6 ft. social distancing requirements if there are others present in the Church. Please wash your hands again upon exiting.

Baptisms will be available based on pastoral urgency only.    

Confessions: The priests will be available to provide spiritual counseling by phone. You may contact one of the priests to arrange for the sacrament of reconciliation. 

Anointing will only be administered when in danger of death.  

Funerals: The Diocese has asked that we schedule Memorial Masses when the current restrictions are lifted. The Rite of Committal may be celebrated at the cemetery with the immediate family members only.  

We will continue to post videos of our Sunday Liturgy on our homepage. Starting March 19, there will also be videos of the daily readings, with an accompanying reflection. You will find these on our homepage as well.  

If you are aware of an individual who may not have an email or access to the internet, please call the Parish Office to let us know who that person is so that we can reach them via other forms of communication.

If you are in need of assistance, such as critical errands and grocery shopping, please call the Parish Office (216) 932-0617. We have volunteers who are willing to help. If you would like to volunteer to assist others, please call the Parish Office.   


Updated 3/16/20

We wish to inform you of an announcement just made by the Bishops of Ohio. Effective immediately, all Masses/Liturgies will temporarily be suspended, at least through the celebrations of Holy Week and Easter. For the safety and well-being of our parishioners and friends, Gesu is following the instructions provided. If you wish to read the full text of the announcement, please click here >

We have also decided to cancel all events at Gesu until further notice.

We will continue to make available recordings of Sunday liturgies that you can view from home. A link to these videos can be found on our homepage. 

 Please also note the following changes to the Church and Parish Office hours:

  • The Parish Office will remain open 9:00 am - 5:00 pm Monday thru Friday; however there are NO evening or weekend hours.
     
  • The Church will be open 7:00 am - 7:00 pm Sunday thru Saturday.

If you need help with any shopping, we have parishioners who have offered to assist. If you are in need of assistance or are interested in being a volunteer to help others in this time of need, please call the parish office at (216) 932-0617 for more information.

If you or someone you know wish to receive email updates, please send a message to [email protected] and request to be added to our distribution list. 

We continue to pray for all of you during this difficult time.


Updated 3/13/20

Liturgical Dispensation

Yesterday, March 12, 2020 Gov. Mike DeWine issued an executive order regarding the avoidance of large mass gatherings to help limit the spread of COVID-19 in Ohio. Even though religious gatherings are expressly excluded in the order, the Catholic Bishops of Ohio -- out of concern for the common good and the physical as well as spiritual well-being of all of the people of Ohio -- have agreed to cooperate with the governor's direction to create "social distance." Therefore, Catholic faithful who reside in Ohio and all other Catholics currently in Ohio are dispensed from the obligation of attending Sunday Mass for the weekends of March 14-15, March 21-22 and March 28-29. Read the decree from the diocese. Out of charity and concern for our brothers and sisters in Christ, we encourage all the faithful, in particular those who are sick, experiencing symptoms of illness, or are at risk of illness to seriously consider refraining from Mass attendance.

Additionally, the Diocese of Cleveland, unlike other dioceses, has said that we cannot prohibit reception of communion on the tongue. Therefore, we are requesting that any one who wants to receive the Precious Body on the tongue go to the very end of the communion line and receive from the presiding priest. 

As an outreach to our parish community, until further notice, we will be recording Sunday Liturgies that you will be able to view on our website at www.churchofthegesu.org.  

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Event Cancellations/Postponements

In response to recent events and the governor's announcement yesterday, the following events at Gesu Parish have been canceled:

  • 50+ Club St. Patrick’s Day Dinner
  • Bulldog Madness
  • Stations of the Cross (If you would like to come to church to pray the Stations yourself, there will be a basket of Stations booklets available for use in the front vestibule.)

Additionally, Gesu Catholic School’s production of The Little Mermaid Jr. has been postponed until further notice.


Updated 3/11/20

Dear Parishioners, 

As we continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation we want to reassure you that we have been taking direction from the health experts and the Diocese of Cleveland.

We want to encourage those that are considered high risk, older adults and those with serious health issues, to consider your involvement in any large group gatherings including Sunday Mass. I am offering you dispensation from your Sunday Mass obligation.

We will be posting updates about any cancellations of events and disseminating any important information about COVID-19 here on our website. Please check back often to stay up on all that is happening because the situation seems to be progressing quite rapidly.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Fr. Karl J. Kiser, SJ


Updated 3/10/20

We know that many of you are concerned about the coronavirus (COVID-19) and public worship. Until the health crisis passes, Gesu Parish will implement the following measures effective immediately.

  • The distribution of the Precious Body will be to the hands only.
  • The distribution of the Precious Blood will be suspended.
  • The congregation will be instructed to exchange the sign of peace without physical contact.
  • The holy water fonts will be emptied.

The Catholic Diocese of Cleveland Office for Worship, in consultation with the USCCB Committee on Divine Worship and CDC recommendations, suggests that the following measures be taken in the celebration of the liturgy:

  • Parishioners who are sick should stay home. Missing Mass is not a sin if you are sick.
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water.
  • Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer, especially after shaking hands with others.

In addition, the Ohio Department of Health has communicated precautionary measures that people should take. These precautions are the same common sense hygiene precautions one would take to prevent the flu, including:

  • Avoid close contact with sick 
  • Cover mouth/nose with tissue/sleeve when coughing /sneezing.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water, especially after coughing /
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth after touching
  • Practice good health habits (clean home, adequate sleep, healthystress management).

Should the threat from COVID-19 become dire, further measures to safeguard the faithful will be announced. Please monitor the Ohio Department of Health and the CDC websites, as well as official communications from the diocese, for accurate information in this developing public health situation.