Our Lady of the Valley Catholic Church is a Catholic faith community, called by God the Father, centered in Jesus Christ, and empowered by the Holy Spirit to proclaim God's love and the Gospel message through word and action to all people.
-Our Lady of the Valley Parish Mission Statement
Happy 45th Anniversary
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May 16-17 2020
May 13, 2020
Dear Parishioners of Our Lady of the Valley,
We want you to know you are a vital part of our church community and we have missed seeing you so much! Thank you for your faith and patience during the suspension of public Mass. On May 11th, Bishop Baker issued a directive that allows us to begin the process of re-opening the churches along with the guidelines from the state and local authorities. Our Lady of the Valley Church is very excited to announce to our parishioners that we will begin the process of re-opening for the public celebration of Mass and confessions. We recognize that the COVID-19 virus is still present, and to help reduce the risk to our parishioners at our church services; we will be implementing new service procedures, new sanitation protocols, and different Mass times for parishioners to allow for greater social distancing. We have plans in place to have our worship spaces cleaned and sanitized between services, and to improve cleaning practices of frequently touched areas. There will also be a special Mass celebrated for only vulnerable persons which will include the elderly and those with conditions that put them at greater risk.
We are still bound to follow Governor Ivey’s amended directive “Safer at Home”, along with the Bishop’s guidelines, which requires the proper social distancing at any event that has 10 or more people in attendance. In order to follow these guidelines, we will hold confessions in two different rooms in the church and have 3 Masses on Sunday ONLY; 7:00am (Mass for vulnerable persons ONLY), 8:30am, and 11am.
Confessions Saturday May 16, 2020:
- Confessions will be held on Saturday May 16, 2020 from 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm and will be heard at two locations inside the church: The Minister’s Room & The Cry Room. Rooms will be marked: Fr Liju Confessional & Msgr. Rohling Confessional.
- ENTER only at the main entrance of the church. Door will be marked CONFESSIONAL ENTRANCE and stand on a blue marked line on the floor. This is to allow for proper distancing.
- If there are no remaining blue lines available to stand on, please wait in your car and observe when someone leaves the side door, then you may go in and line up on the available blue line.
- MASKS MUST BE WORN FOR CONFESSIONS.
- After confession, EXIT only out the side door which is located left of the Minister’s Room and right of the Cry Room. Door will be marked CONFESSIONAL EXIT.
- There should be no chatting or conversation while standing in the confessional line.
Catholic Mass on the Sixth Sunday of Easter
- Mass times: 7:00 am, 8:30 am, and 11:00 am. 7:00 am Mass will be reserved ONLY for the most vulnerable. This will include the elderly and those with conditions that put them at greater risk.
- All attendees are asked to wear face masks.
- Missalettes and hymnals will not be available for the foreseeable future.
- A collection plate will not be passed down the pews. Two collection baskets will be available up to the right and the left near the altar for your contributions. You may drop your offering into either basket before Mass or as you go through the Holy Communion line.
- In the church, every other pew will be marked off for seating along with directional arrows on the aisles for proper walking traffic.
- Families may sit together but should maintain a 6-ft social distance from non-family members in the same pew.
- The first person to enter a pew should move to the center to prevent people from having to move across others to take a seat.
- The physical exchange of the sign of peace will continue to be omitted, allowing for the possibility of a simple bow or hand wave.
- There will be three places to receive the Eucharist. 1) the aisle near the choir 2) the main aisle 3) the aisle to the right of the altar. Ushers will be directing the flow from each pew. Please wait for their direction and follow the instructions. Each aisle will have a single file line. Follow the diagram below for the walking flow of Holy Communion distribution.
- Communion will be distributed under the form of the Host only, recalling that Christ is present whole and entire even under only one form.
- Face masks must be lowered before receiving Holy Communion.
- If wearing gloves, gloves must be removed before receiving Holy Communion.
- Communion will be received ONLY on the hand, not on the tongue.
- After the final blessing and closing song, back pews will EXIT FIRST and proceed outside the church, followed by the middle pews and finally the front pews. We would like to avoid congestion upon exiting so please leave the church building and do not congregate in the vestibule.
- The Bishop has granted dispensation, recognizing that not all will feel comfortable to return to public worship right away, due to concerns or fears about COVID-19. Some who are pregnant, immunocompromised, or otherwise in a higher-risk category, will wisely wish to wait some time until returning to public worship.
As we venture together on the “soft opening” of our church, we recognize we are asking you to adhere to many temporary changes, but we are hoping you understand these changes are for your safety and well being. Please do not hesitate to call the office if you have any questions or concerns about these changes or any other concerns or questions you have about the church. We are so looking forward to seeing everyone again!
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Msgr. Paul Rohling
Spiritual Communion prayer:
My Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love You above all things and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there, and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.
Prayer for Vocations
Gracious and Loving God, help the men and women of the Diocese of Birmingham hear your call to serve. Our needs are great and our people thirst for your presence. Open the hearts of many, raise up faithful servants of the Gospel, dedicated holy sisters, brothers, deacons and priests, who will give themselves for your people and their needs. Bless those who are serving now with courage and perseverance. Grant that many will be inspired by their example and faith. We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord, who is the same yesterday, today and forever.
- Mary, Mother of Vocations
- Pray for us.
We have a new Bishop
March 25, 2020 – Today, the Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord, at 12:00pm Rome Time (6:00am Central Daylight Time), Pope Francis named Bishop Steven John Raica as Fifth Bishop of Birmingham in Alabama.
Bishop Raica is currently bishop of the Diocese of Gaylord, Michigan, where he has served since 2014. Previously, he was a priest of the Diocese of Lansing, Michigan. He originally comes from the town of Munising, Michigan, which is located in the Upper Peninsula. He was ordained a priest in 1978, has had a wide range of parish and other pastoral experiences over the years, and holds a doctorate in Canon Law from the Gregorian University in Rome.
With Bishop Raica’s nomination, Bishop Robert Baker’s resignation now becomes effective and he assumes the title of Bishop Emeritus. He has also been named Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese for the time leading up to Bishop Raica’s installation. We are so grateful for Bishop Baker’s 13-year service to our diocese and our Cathedral parish. We know this is not goodbye, and look forward to his continued presence with us in retirement. Thank you, Bishop Baker!
A press conference will be held at 10:00am in the Chancery to welcome Bishop Raica, who remains in Michigan due to the COVID-19 crisis and will join via livestream. We await the news of when Bishop Raica will visit Birmingham. His installation is scheduled for Tuesday, June 23, 2020. More information will be available soon concerning the time and other details connected with his installation.
Welcome, Bishop Raica!
Please visit the diocesan web site for more information: http://www.bhmdiocese.org.
Fr Liju letter to parishioners
Fear not, for I am with you (Isaiah 41:10).
Dear friends, this is the first time in my life that the Catholic Church has had to restrict Holy Mass and church activities. We know all too well that this virus is very serious. Recently, I read these words: “God will make a way where there seems to be no way”. We must persist in faith of our Lord’s protection and His love.
Before this time, I heard so often, “Father Liju, I have no time. I’m so busy”. But now the whole world is stopping, and people suddenly have so much time. Some are even bored. Maybe many of us are finally getting enough sleep. Please consider that this time at home is more than just free time away from work or school. Please beware of extra screen time, excessive TV bingeing, infinite phone calls, outrageous memes, and maybe, constant snacks. What about quiet time with God? The Lord will renew us and restore our spirits and our stamina when we let Him. He doesn’t force prayer or meditation on us. He knows what you need, and He wants to give you His peace, but He leaves these choices up to us. “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength” (Isaiah 40:31). Spend quiet time with your Creator in prayer and rosary recitation, Bible reading, or quiet meditation. Ask Him to help you prioritize your “to-do” list items. Dr. Vance Havner, a famous one-liner preacher, said, “God does not run an antique shop. He makes all things new.” This is the best time in our life to connect with God. Thank Him for our homes, food, medicines, and clean water for drinking and for bathing, for electricity, technology, music and books. Ask God to protect and take care of our family and friends. Ask Him to put His loving arms around those who are sick, doctors, nurses, scientists and those who work tirelessly and at the risk of their own health. “Fear not, for I am with you” (Isaiah 41:10).
From the cross, Jesus gave His mother to the world, and so, Mary is OUR Blessed
Mother. In the MEMORARE prayer, we turn to her in our worries, “That never was it know that anyone who fled to your protection, implored your help or sought your intercession was left unaided.” The rosary is a powerful prayer. With that confidence, let us join together in our rosaries asking the Blessed Mother’s intercession to Jesus for our world. Recite the rosary with different intentions each day. God is merciful in leading His people back from adversity. He forgives and saves us from our own sinfulness. Giving ourselves totally to God is a
Way of receiving Him. I am for God, and God is for me. Let us give ourselves to Him and join our OLV brothers, sisters and Catholics around the world to pray together, “Lord, save us. Lord, stay with us now and forever. Lord, be with us and with our brothers and sisters around the world. Amen.”
With Love and Prayers
Fr.Liju Paul Parambeth
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- Monsignor Paul Rohling, Pastor
- Father Liju Paul Parambath, Associate Pastor
- Rev. Mr. Dan Whitaker, Deacon
- Rev. Mr. Bob Martin, Deacon
- Rev. Mr. Robert Long, Deacon
- Ms. Theresa Thienpont, Director of Music Ministry
- Mark Woodard, Director of Religious Education
- Kathleen Keelin, Middle School Youth Ministry
- Mrs. Karen Portante, Office Manager, Admin Assistant
- Mrs. Kathy Martin, DRE Secretary, Admin Assistant
- Mrs. Carol Cahill, Website, Admin Assistant