In Response to the Lifting of
State of Emergency
May 26 (Tue), 2020
St. Ignatius Church
From Fr. Ryuichiro Hanafusa, SJ, Pastor
In response to lifting of the state of emergency in Tokyo, the Archbishop of Tokyo has issued new guidelines. According to the new guidelines, we will wait for a while (about 3 weeks) to reopen the church. As for our parish, we will proceed as follows.
Opening of the Church
All the four chapels (main church, St. Mary’s Chapel, St. Xavier’s Chapel and crypt) will be opened for public. When coming to the church for visiting the Blessed Sacrament etc., please make sure to follow the necessary infection preventive measures. Be sure to wear a mask, and to disinfect yourself by washing your hands or using alcohol disinfectants. Please keep silence during your prayer.
Especially when you take a seat, consider social distance and try to keep enough distance between each other. (The seats you can sit on are marked).
Elderly people (aged 65 and over) and people with serious health conditions are requested by the Archbishop to continue to refrain from coming to the church. This is because if elderly people or those with serious illness are infected, there is a higher risk of danger to them. We ask that each person consider their own age and health and make wise decisions and act responsibly.
Public Mass and Activities Remain Cancelled.
According to the Archbishop's guidelines, all masses and activities remain suspended. As there are no public Masses, you may continue to send paper cranes to the church representing yourselves. We will collect the old ones by the end of May and start accepting the new ones from June (we will replace the paper cranes once a month).
We will continue with the live telecasting of Masses on Sundays. In order to facilitate the live streaming, the main chapel will remain closed on Sundays.
Preparing for Partial Reopening
The Archbishop will announce new guidelines for reopening the church (for Mass and activities). In response, I will inform you about the reopening arrangements in Ignatius Church. It is expected that it will be a step by step restart rather than a complete reopening of the church for Public Mass/activities.
This year's Parish Theme is "New Collaboration". Though we are not able to proceed with what we originally planned, we would like to reflect in our prayers on how to live this theme. In a situation where the world demands new lifestyles, the manner of our faith life and church life calls for new innovations as well.
In the given scenario; how to deepen our prayer, how to convey the Gospel, and how to establish community connections are some points to ponder on. We need your positive support especially in these tough times. Ideas that are new and creative are the need of the time. Let's explore together as we walk this journey together.
Fr. Hanafusa Ryuichiro, SJ, Pastor