Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

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Parish Email Newsletter

We have been using the parish email newsletter to send out updates about the rapidly changing circumstances regarding COVID-19. If you haven’t received them that means we don’t have your current email address. The same updates can be found on the parish website, but if you’d like to be added to the email list please sign up at http://eepurl.com/bPQy6r. Also, if your email address or any other information has changed, kindly inform Daisy Rivera, the office administrator, of those changes. Thank you!


Reopening: Click for Mass Guidelines and Registration.


October 15, 2020

Dear Friends,

For some time, the month of October has always been one of my favorite months of the year. With October comes a new school year, Packers football, and the crisp fall weather which I enjoy very much. In the Church, October is Respect Life Month which reminds us that every life is sacred, from the moment of conception until natural death. October is also a month in the Church traditionally dedicated to Mary and to praying the Rosary. And last but not least, the Church’s liturgical calendar in October is quite full with many celebrations of the lives of the saints. So even in the midst of our present circumstances, it still makes for a beautiful month!

This past week, we celebrated one of the great Saints in the life of the Church – Saint Teresa of Avila. She was no stranger to suffering, yet her deep friendship with Jesus Christ gave her the gift of interior peace which sustained her through many trials. Like Saint Teresa, I can only imagine how much is on your mind these days and that there is much that could easily lead us down the path of fear, doubt, or anxiety. Saint Teresa reminds us to trust in the Lord always, to never be afraid, and to be at peace. I share now this beautiful poem she composed entitled “Nada Te Turbe” (“Let Nothing Disturb You”):

Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing away:
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things
Whoever has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.

May the peace of the risen Christ fill your hearts and the hearts of your loved ones this week. Know of my love and prayers always!

In Person Mass. Our Mass schedule can be found on the Reopening and Mass Times pages of the parish website. Please be sure to register online to attend an in person Mass. Registration can be found on the Reopening page of the parish website: www.oldsaintmary.org/reopening.

Video Mass for Sunday, October 18th. Here is the recorded Mass for this upcoming Sunday (World Mission Sunday). We provide a worship aid to help you better enter into the prayer of the Mass. Please know that we will continue these recorded Masses indefinitely. We are so grateful to DV Productions, our Liturgists Mary Robertson and Brian Eggers, and our music ministers for their efforts in making our prayer as beautiful as possible.

Riverwest Food Pantry Thanksgiving Meals. Now more than ever, neighbors in our community will need help to provide a Thanksgiving meal for their families. This year, to keep our entire community safe, the Riverwest Food Pantry is collecting financial donations for food gift cards instead of collecting non-perishable food items. Buy a Thanksgiving Meal for a family in our community by going to www.riverwestfoodpantry.org/thanksgiving-giveaway.

Annual Mission Cooperation Plan. Are you aware of the life-giving friendships that members of Saints Peter and Paul maintain with our sister parish in Chiapas, Mexico and that members of Three Holy Women maintain with our sister parish in Padibe, Uganda?? This year, we are able to extend these relationships to our entire Family of Four community through our Annual Mission Cooperation Plan! This weekend at Mass (or next weekend at THW) you’ll hear from parishioners who have visited with our brothers and sisters in Chiapas and Padibe. You’ll hear about the projects that are moving forward in both locations. To learn more, to watch a brand new video, or to make a donation to our Padibe Annual Mission Appeal, please visit www.threeholywomenparish.org/padibe, and to learn more and make a donation to our Chiapas Annual Mission Appeal, please visit ssppmilw.org/sister-parish!

St. Vincent de Paul. The Six Saints St. Vincent de Paul Conference members are continuing to make home visits to individuals and families within our service area of our church neighborhoods. We are following safe distance practices by making “phone visits” or visiting on porches rather than indoor home visits. We provide for the basic needs of those experiencing economic distress, including beds, furniture, some appliances, and household items. We also provide resource contacts for information about other possibilities for assistance. One of our most important gifts to leave behind is a feeling that someone cares and that there is hope. During this COVID time our requests have greatly increased with our conference seeing three to five families a week. Many of our requests are for beds. If you’d like to make a financial donation to help St. Vincent de Paul with these expenses, please write a check made out to St. Vincent de Paul with “Six Saints” in the memo line and mail it to the Three Holy Women Parish Office at 1716 N Humboldt Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53202. Contributions to the Cathedral/Old St. Mary’s Conference of St. Vincent de Paul can be mailed to 831 N Van Buren St, Milwaukee, WI 53202.

Women’s Support Center. October is Pro-Life Month so you are invited to learn more about… and support the good work of… the Women’s Support Center. The Women’s Support Center is a very busy Catholic, pro-life crisis pregnancy help center on 21st and Wisconsin, between Marquette University and Planned Parenthood, serving approximately 150-200 women a month. All services they offer are 100% free and include pregnancy tests, ultrasounds, counseling against abortion, post-abortion counseling, teaching natural family planning, breastfeeding classes and much more. Please help them continue their life-saving mission by going to www.wscmil.org/donations and donating today! You can also mail checks to Women’s Support Center, 2051 W Wisconsin Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53233.

Parish Financial Support. We continue to be humbled by your financial support of the parish during these tender and tenuous times. Thank you so much, it has been amazing to witness the generosity of so many! Please mail in your envelopes and contributions to our parish office (Old St. Mary Parish, 835 N Milwaukee St, Milwaukee, WI 53202), and our parish staff will process these.

Please do not hesitate to contact me (Cell: 414-305-3824; baumgardnerj@archmil.org) or Fr. Tim (Cell: 414-762-7986; kitzket@archmil.org) if you need anything! Be assured of our love and prayers.

Sincerely, with love,
Fr. John


October 8, 2020

“There are places in our hearts that do not exist, and into them enters suffering that they might have existence.”  (Leon Bloy)

Dear Friends,

Something I hear often these days is who would have thought that 2020 would turn out as it has, and secondly, when will it be done?

As the pandemic continues to spin, as our communal search for justice and peace moves on in fits and starts, as division in politics infiltrates the very air we all breathe, our hearts are tired and sad and worried. Our very existence is weary.

We read in this Sunday’s second reading from St. Paul’s Letter to the Philippians (ch. 4):

“I know how to live in humble circumstances; I also know how to live with abundance. In every circumstance and in all things I have learned the secret of being well fed and of going hungry, of living in abundance and of being in need. I can do all things in him who strengthens me.”

In all the suffering we are facing, maybe God is asking us to let something new be born in our hearts! Maybe our very weariness is the source of new growth and insight.  Maybe if we really trust Christ, like St. Paul and a lot of people who have suffered before us did and can witness—something is happening, and it will be good! It will be good.

Stay hopeful and have a blessed week.

In Person Mass. Our Mass schedule can be found on the Reopening and Mass Times pages of the parish website. Please be sure to register online to attend an in person Mass. Registration can be found on the Reopening page of the parish website: www.oldsaintmary.org/reopening.

Video Mass for Sunday, October 11th. Here is the recorded Mass for this upcoming Sunday (the 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time). We provide a worship aid to help you better enter into the prayer of the Mass. Please know that we will continue these recorded Masses indefinitely. We are so grateful to DV Productions, our Liturgists Mary Robertson and Brian Eggers, and our music ministers for their efforts in making our prayer as beautiful as possible.

Eat, Drink & Be Catholic. On Wednesday, October 14th, Chad Griesel, Sean Carroll and Michael Adams will introduce this year’s theme, “From Social Distance to Encounter,” and will reflect on the powerful need for what Pope Francis calls a “culture of encounter” amidst an ongoing pandemic, calls for racial justice, and growing hyper-partisanship in an election year. Eat, Drink and Be Catholic offers women and men of all ages a casual opportunity to explore the Catholic faith. We hope to provide space for intellectual, relational and spiritual growth as well as some real community building. Due to the ongoing challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, our gatherings will take place via Zoom until further notice. The conversations will also be recorded and posted on the Family of Four Parishes YouTube channel. For further information or to receive the Zoom link for October 14th, contact Chad Griesel, Pastoral Associate of Formation and Justice, at grieselc@archmil.org.

Catholic East Elementary. Check out this video update on some of the great things happening at Catholic East Elementary and the Seton Catholic Schools network. Thank you for your continued support of our parish school!

Virtual Food Drive. It’s a new month, so we have a new challenge!! Please continue our relationship of mutuality with the Riverwest Food Pantry by supporting them in this month’s virtual food drive. You’ll notice some new items this month: breakfast foods! You can purchase food to be delivered directly to the pantry at https://yougivegoods.com/familyoffourparishes-october.

St. Vincent de Paul. October is Vincentian Awareness Month! Oftentimes, it is through the invitation to ‘do’ something that a person joins the St. Vincent de Paul Society. Volunteering time and talent to help others is a natural response for followers of Christ. Vincentians heed the invitation to volunteer and then embrace the vocation to grow in holiness using their God-given gifts to ease the suffering of others. From its beginning, the Society has been organized for lay people to put their faith into action applying three essential elements: spirituality, friendship and service. The St. Vincent de Paul Society of Milwaukee is dedicated to the elimination of hunger and poverty in our community. Learn more about our mission and what Vincentians do to fulfill that mission. Contact Laura Hancock, Director of Social Justice and Outreach, at hancockl@archmil.org.

Faithful Citizenship. As we are now less than a month from this year’s presidential election, we offer the attached information as you prepare your vote! This week’s Faithful Citizenship flyer highlights the importance of Catholic Social Teaching: the centrality of the life & dignity of the human person, as well as considerations of poverty and economic justice.

Parish Financial Support. We continue to be humbled by your financial support of the parish during these tender and tenuous times. Thank you so much, it has been amazing to witness the generosity of so many! Please mail in your envelopes and contributions to our parish office (Old St. Mary Parish, 835 N Milwaukee St, Milwaukee, WI 53202), and our parish staff will process these.

Please do not hesitate to contact me (Cell: 414-762-7986; kitzket@archmil.org) or Fr. John (Cell: 414-305-3824; baumgardnerj@archmil.org) if you need anything! Be assured of our love and prayers.

Sincerely, with love,
Fr. Tim


Please read the following important announcement from Brian Eggers, Director of Liturgy and Music for SS Peter and Paul and Old St. Mary.

“I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 1:3-6

It is with a heart full of gratitude that I write to you today. After much prayerful consideration, I am announcing my retirement from the music/liturgical ministry of SS. Peter and Paul and Old St. Mary Parishes. I have decided to leave full time work in the church to pursue more fully my real estate business and also discover new and creative ways to use my passion for music. My final Sunday will be January 3, 2021 – the Feast of the Epiphany.

Over my years serving on the Eastside, I have been blessed to minister with some of the best priests in the archdiocese and the best staff any parish or family of parishes could have. I have also been blessed to serve in one of the most welcoming and loving parishes I have ever known – SS. Peter and Paul. You welcomed me with open arms and received me in your families in such a way that you have become my family. I will forever be grateful for your love and support. I know that I have not been at Old St. Mary long, but you too have lovingly welcomed me as your parish music/liturgy director and I will always be grateful for your welcome.

I want to thank Fr. Tim for his support and friendship and love. As I have served alongside you, I have come to love you deeply and appreciate your unconditional support and encouragement. You are and always will be a wonderful gift in my life. Thank you.

Thank you also to Fr. John. Even though we have not served together long, I know you have a deep love for these parishes and they are all blessed to have you. Thank you for your friendship, leadership and support and Star Wars jokes.

Thank you to the staff – you have become dear friends and family and I will miss you greatly. You truly are the best staff ever. No one can compare to you. Thank you for your tireless ministry to this family of four parishes. You are a gift to all of us.

Thank you to all of our wonderful Lectors, Eucharistic Ministers, Acolytes, and Ministers of Hospitality. You are an incredible blessing to me and our parishes. Your commitment to prayerful liturgy and a welcoming environment is a beautiful gift. Thank you for how you have assisted me in creating liturgy that is heartfelt, meaningful and welcoming. I will miss you greatly.

I would be remiss if I didn’t offer a special thank you to my choir members and cantors and other musicians. You will always hold a special place in my heart and in my song. There have been many times that you have been the ones to keep me going in challenging times in my life – even if you didn’t realize it. You are angels and your song will always resound in my heart and my mind. I am so grateful for the beautiful music we have created together. I am sorry that during this pandemic we have been unable to be together when the world needs our song so desperately.

I love each and every one of you and I wish you nothing but the best and ask you pray for me as I move on to my new adventures and creative endeavors. This is my prayer for you:

May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind be always at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face and the rains fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand.


October 8 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim
October 1 Weekly Message from Fr. John
September 24 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim
September 17 Weekly Message from Fr. John
September 10 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim
September 4 Weekly Message from Fr. John
August 27 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim
August 20 Weekly Message from Fr. John
August 13 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim
August 6 Weekly Message from Fr. John
July 30 Weekly Message from Fr. John
July 23 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim
July 16 Weekly Message from Fr. John
July 10 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim and Fr. John
Social Justice Updates and Invitations for Involvement – July 8
July 2 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim and Fr. John
We’re Reopening! – June 29
June 26 Weekly Message from Fr. John
June 18 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim and Fr. John
June 11 Weekly Message from Fr. Tim and Fr. John
Pray, Learn, Act – June 2
May 28 Update from Fr. John
May 21 Update from Fr. Tim
Important Message About Reopening Churches – May 18
May 14 Update from Fr. Tim
May 7 Update from Fr. Tim and Fr. John
May 1 Update from Fr. Tim and Fr. John
April 23 Update from Fr. Tim and Fr. John
April 16 Update from Fr. Tim and Fr. John
Holy Week at Home – April 7, 2020
April 2 Update from Fr. Tim and Fr. John
Letter from Fr. Tim and Fr. John – March 26, 2020
Letter from Fr. Tim and Fr. John – March 20, 2020
Letter from Fr. Tim and Fr. John – March 16, 2020
Letter from Fr. John – March 13, 2020
Weekly Wellness Letter from Staff (from I’d Like to Help Form)
Archbishop Listecki’s Letters and Archdiocesan Updates