Coronavirus
May God’s blessing come down upon you as a consoling embrace. Pope Francis

We're here to help...

In these challenging and unprecedented times, many of us will rely on our faith for courage, strength and guidance. With this in mind, this page has been developed to offer the latest updates on our parish’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as providing resources to support your spiritual life at this difficult time. 

In addition to the resources which are available here on our website, you can continue to seek further help and advice by contacting us directly. While all church buildings are now closed, please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of any assistance, or if you just need to chat. If you need any support whatsoever, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Rev. A. Forrest (Parish Priest)
01506 822339

Callum Timms (Chair of the Parish Pastoral Council)
07817 510 850

You can also email us by clicking here.

Reopening our church

In line with the guidance we have received from the Scottish Government and the Bishops' Conference of Scotland, we are able to open our church for private prayer. Please keep an eye out in our newsletter and the calendar on our website to find out when our church will be open.

If you are visiting St. Mary's for private prayer, a steward will greet you and direct you to a seat, following a one-way system. We have hand sanitiser available, and seats are being disinfected regularly. You will be required to wear a face covering during your time in the church. We have a limited supply of face masks, however if you can bring your own face covering that would be very helpful.

Please note that the obligation to attend Mass remains suspended, and you are under no obligation to visit the church. Please follow the Scottish Government's guidance in deciding whether or not to visit the church (you should consider whether you are in the shielding category, for example). Please maintain social distancing at all times in the church and grounds, and use hand sanitiser as you enter and exit the church. As always, you can contact us using the phone numbers and email address above if you have any questions.

Parish Updates

Earlier in lockdown, we sent a letter to all parishioners. If you have not received this, we may not have your contact details. You can let us know how to contact you by clicking here. You can also read our letter online, too, by clicking here.

As a parish, we are also sharing regular updates online. These include sharing prayer resources and broadcasting some services live online. To keep up with the latest, have a look at our social media channels. You can like our page on Facebook by clicking here, follow us on Twitter here, and find us on Instagram here. Even if you don't use social media, you can use these links to view our updates without having to sign up.

You can also receive updates from St. Mary's directly to your email inbox. Simply sign up by completing the form here.

The Archdiocese of St Andrew's and Edinburgh are also publishing regular updates on their website. This includes the correspondence sent by Archbishop Cushley to all clergy, updating them on the measures being taken and what they should do during the present pandemic. You can keep up-to-date with these updates by clicking here.

Watch Live

Don't forget you can tune in to our regular live broadcasts online. You can watch our Masses, services and reflections live on Facebook by visiting our page here or simply head over to the Watch Live page of our website here.

Prayer

The current situation means that we are unable to gather around the Eucharistic table for the celebration of Mass. This is, therefore, a very difficult time for us, and can be disheartening. However, this cannot and must not stop us from praying evermore fervently, remembering that we can still join in prayer in communion with one another, even when we are unable to receive the Blessed Sacrament itself. Our homes and families - the Domestic Church - also becomes increasingly important, and we would encourage you to pray together at this time. We'd like to offer the following resources to help with this:

  • The Bishops' Conference of Scotland have prepared a prayer booklet for times when Mass cannot be celebrated publicly. Try using this whenever you would normally attend Mass. You can access it by clicking here.
  • Daily Mass readings, the Liturgy of the Hours, and other prayers can be found on the Universalis website here.
  • Archbishop Cushley has encouraged us to pray the Memorare daily to Our Lady, Health of the Sick, for the intention of a conclusion to the current pandemic. You can find the text of the Memorare below.
  • The Jesuits in Britain have compiled a collection of prayer resources based on Ignatian Spirituality. You can access these here.
  • We are being encouraged to participate in the ecumenical call to prayer, alongside our Christian brothers and sisters. 13 Christian Churches have supported the pledge to light a candle in our windows at home at 7pm each Sunday, and to pray together. You can find out more, and find a suggested prayer by clicking here.

Memorare

Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thine intercession was left unaided.

Inspired by this confidence, I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins, my mother; to thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy clemency hear and answer me.

Amen.

Our Lady, Health of the Sick,

Pray for us.

Can you help?

Finally, you may be wondering how you can support efforts in our parish, and our wider community, during the Coronavirus pandemic. If you are a parishioner, and would like to volunteer to keep in touch with other parishioners or assist with essential deliveries, please complete the form here.

As a parish, we are also pleased to support the Bo'ness and Blackness Community Response which has been set up following discussions at Bo'ness Churches Together, an ecumenical working group in Bo'ness. If you are able to help in your own neighbourhood in either Bo'ness or Blackness, or if you or someone you know needs some help, please get in touch with this group using the form here. You can also find out more about the group and their work here.

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