Welcome to the Circle of Saints Cluster webpage
We are a cluster of 3 Catholic parishes in central Iowa:
St. Patrick-Tama, St. Joseph-Chelsea & St. Michael-Belle Plaine
Mass resuming May 30/31
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
It is with great joy that I write to you that we are once again able to celebrate Mass publicly in the Circle of Saints Cluster starting the weekend of May 30th/31st! The coronavirus has taken a great toll on each of us, our community, and the whole world. While we celebrate being able to return to a greater sense of normalcy, its effects on us will continue for some time. I ask that during this time of transition each of us pray for patience, wisdom, and prudence as we work to move out of this pandemic. While the Archbishop has allowed public Masses to resume, the Sunday obligation continues to be dispensed. Those of you who feel uncomfortable returning at this time, are at high risk from the virus, or think you may have been exposed to the COVID-19 are asked as this time to continue to stay home. You will notice some changes at Mass and in the parishes to enhance our safety for all, following the guidelines given to us by the Archdiocese of Dubuque. These will be in place until further notice to allow us to continue to worship as the Body of Christ but to do so with charity and concern for our neighbor. To that end the following guidelines will be followed:
- Social distancing will need to be observed. This will mean that there should be no mingling before or after Mass and no events that would encourage a gathering. Pews will also be marked off to encourage spacing and you are asked to sit only with your immediate household. Additional seating will be available in the gathering space at St. Patrick’s and the basement at St. Michael’s. This will limit the amount of seating and when space is full, people might be asked to attend a different Mass. Please plan accordingly. Daily Mass at St. Patrick’s will be held in the main Church to allow for distancing.
- Physical contact is to be avoided as much as possible. This means that there should be no holding hands during the Our Father, the sign of peace will be omitted for the time being, and instead of a collection there will be a basket by the entrance of Church in which you can place your offering. Bulletins will also be on a table for people to pick up rather than being passed out.
- Liturgical ministers will be kept to a minimum to help with distancing. We will not have altar servers for the time being. All Eucharistic ministers will use hand sanitizer before and after distributing communion, and will wear a mask during distribution.
- Communion will only be distributed by the host, and we encourage you to receive in the hand at this time. The communion line will work differently to maintain social distancing, and will be explained before Mass at each parish.
- Missalettes will be removed from the pews to reduce common surfaces that people are touching. This will mean more simple music during Mass for a time.
- You are welcome and encouraged to wear a mask, and hand sanitizer will be available at all entrances of the Church.
Also, to allow for proper cleaning of the facilities between services and to limit gathering more people in one place at a time, a slight change will be made in the Mass times for a while. Mass times will be as follows:
- 4:30pm at St. Joseph’s, Chelsea (Confessions from 3:45-4:15pm)
- 6:30pm at St. Patrick’s, Tama in Spanish
- 8:30am at St. Michael’s, Belle Plaine
- 10:30am at St. Patrick’s, Tama in English
Following the recommendations from the Archdiocese, while the county is under a disaster
proclamation the offices will closed to the public except by appointment only. As those expire, we will move to opening the offices and buildings to walkers and the public. I understand that this is not how we would like things to be, and I think all of us would like to return to normal immediately. However, these guidelines are in place for the safety of us all and in the hope that by following them we will be able to return to normal more quickly. As we have seen throughout this pandemic, things can change quickly. It is possible that we may have to shut down again if things flare up, or we may be able to open up more quickly if a vaccine or cure is found. We just don’t know. However, we continue to have hope, to turn to the Lord, and to care for each other in Christian charity.
Please know that, although we have to maintain some restrictions, our parish is here to
serve you as best we can and we keep each other in prayer.
Rev. Dennis Conway
- Office Phone – (641) 484-3039
- Rectory Phone – (641) 484-4242
Click here for the parish registration form.
Cluster Finance Committee:
St. Patrick: Tom Doyle & Charlotte Upah
St. Michael: Wayne Parizek & Carol Wonrau
St. Joseph: Tom L. Upah & Trish Stadler
Click here for November 2019 Cluster Finance Minutes
St. Michael's Parishioners: Please go to the St. Michael page (tab above) to learn more about electronic giving.
Wednesday (Live Stream)
8:30am-St. Michael-Belle Plaine
6:30pm-St. Patrick-Tama-Mass in Spanish
8:30am-St. Michael-Belle Plaine
There are no upcoming scheduled events.