Parish Center Reopening Postponed
After careful review of the most current federal, state and diocesan recommendations and mandates, and thoughtful deliberation of the involved issues as they relate to St. Mary’s church, school and Parish Center, the Reopening Task Force has determined that the Parish Center will remain closed to all groups for at least another one to two months.
Determining factors are as follows:
1. The Parish Center and St. Mary School share common hallways, rooms, restrooms, along with entrances and exits. It is not considered a separate building.
2. Our primary responsibility remains the health, safety and well-being of all- our students, faculty, school staff and our entire parish family.
3. The current school Covid plan outlines no visitors (including parents) to the school during the school day and daily disinfection of any and all spaces used prior to the next school day.
4. Our facilities staff on campus is currently sanitizing all school, church and parish spaces. Current staffing limits any additional disinfecting hours.
5. As is the case with all older school buildings, the existing ventilation system is less than ideal with respect to adequate air exchange, necessitating strict adherence to mask and distancing protocols to lessen the risk of droplet exposure during school hours. Introducing additional groups of people into the buildings obviously increases the potential for air contamination, thereby posing an increased risk to all.
6. Because of the fluctuating incidence of Covid cases at this time, the ongoing uncertainty of asymptomatic carriers and the added risk associated with the upcoming flu season, it is inappropriate to consider easing restrictions that would allow additional non-essential gatherings.
7. The Buffalo Diocese strongly urges schools and parishes to postpone the resumption of non-essential gatherings until further notice.
Therefore, the Task Force is recommending ministries, committees, and other small groups continue to meet via Zoom or consider limited use of the church with special approvals from parish administration.
We greatly appreciate the patience, understanding and full cooperation of all members of the St. Mary’s faith family as we strive to safely navigate through these difficult and unprecedented times. Please be assured that the primary focus of our work is the health and safety of all of us. We pray for the Lord’s guidance as we continue to monitor this continually evolving crisis.