DETROIT — As the number of coronavirus cases in Michigan continues to grow, public gatherings and events — including Masses — have been restricted for the safety and health of the general public and to mitigate the spread of the virus.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared a state of emergency, banned all gatherings of 250 or more people and has effectively shut down all schools until April 6. In compliance with the directive, and to limit the spread of the virus and for the safety of the faithful, Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron has suspended all public Masses until April 6.
As the crisis unfolds and people are increasingly limiting social interaction, several resources are available for the faithful to continue their spiritual and Lenten devotions, including digital access to the holy Mass.
These resources include:
Archdiocese of Detroit Mass Livestream Schedule
The archdiocese has announced a running list of livestreamed Masses available to the faithful online or on TV. The list includes times for Sunday, Saturday and daily Mass.
These services are available online or televised by the Catholic Television Network of Detroit (CTND), the Solanus Casey Center, EWTN, and WJBK Fox 2 Detroit in English and Spanish.
The Archdiocese of Detroit will broadcast a private (closed-door) Mass celebrated by Archbishop Vigneron from the Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament at noon Sunday, March 15. The faithful can watch and participate in real-time at www.aod.org/livemasses and on the Archdiocese of Detroit’s Facebook page.
Developed by the Archdiocese of Detroit's Department of Evangelization and Missionary Discipleship, 52 Sundays is a dynamic guide for families to keep the Lord’s Day holy, including family prayer activities, devotions and meals.
The guide is intended to augment Sunday Mass participation, but is also a great resource for families unable to attend Mass. Printed copies of the 52 Sundays guidebook are sold out, but families can sign up for email updates and download a free digital guide here.
‘Encountering Christ’ Course
Sacred Heart Major Seminary is offering a free, online Lenten course titled “Encountering Christ” from March 2 to April 12. Although the course has started, new participants are welcome to register at any time.
“Encountering Christ” features weekly video lectures from some of Sacred Heart’s distinguished faculty, including Dr. Peter Williamson, Fr. Peter Ryan, SJ, and Dr. Eduardo Echeverria, as well as online discussion forums, supplemental reading and personal assessment quizzes.
In light of the fact that many are unable to attend Mass, Magnificat is offering complimentary access to the online version of its prayer book. Magnificat includes the daily liturgy, saint of the day, spiritual reflections and prayers.
Nextstep is a fairly new Catholic discipleship guide that helps you grow in your faith.
Currently, their program of steps is totally free. Each step is designed to be finished in two weeks or less.
Tiny Saints has published free printable activity sheets for families and children who are missing Mass, school and might be stuck at home. In a Facebook post, Tiny Saints wrote that its reasoning behind the move “is to help us all find a reason to smile and stay focused on Jesus, even when we might be tempted to worry.”
As of now, the company only has one free printable, but it plans to have more available soon.
My Catholic Kids
My Catholic Kids is offering free access to their children’s video library during this time of national emergency.
These videos help young children understand and engage with the Mass.
When the faithful are unable to attend Mass due to extraordinary circumstances, they are able to make an Act of Spiritual Communion.
According to the document shared by the archdiocese, “Spiritual Communion means uniting one’s self in prayer with Christ’s sacrifice and worshiping him in his Body and Blood. The most common reason for making an Act of Spiritual Communion is when a person cannot attend Mass. Acts of Spiritual Communion increase our desire to receive sacramental Communion and help us avoid the sins that would make us unable to receive Holy Communion worthily.”
Additional Prayer Resources
The Archdiocese of Detroit has compiled a list of prayer resources including a prayer for the sick, specifically for those suffering from the coronavirus, as well as the prayer of Pope Francis during the coronavirus crisis.
This article will be updated as more resources are made available.