December 14, 2020, 2:39 PM
December 4, 2020, 5 PM
Dear Brother and Sisters,
As a follow up to my most recent communication, I would like to add further clarity and share additional information with you.
First, regarding my health status, as I shared on Wednesday, upon learning of my direct exposure to a COVID positive individual, I immediately quarantined myself and secured a test. The result of that test is positive. State and local health departments have advised me, at this time, to remain in quarantine. Please know I am feeling well and only experiencing mild symptoms. I will return to work after I am cleared to do such.
Next, to add clarity regarding Fr. Rob’s diagnosis.
- Monday, November 23 – Fr. Rob began noticing COVID related symptoms of body aches and mild cough.
- Tuesday, November 24 – While neither Fr. Rob nor myself had knowingly been in direct contact with any individual with COVID-like symptoms or who had tested positive for the illness, Fr. Rob quarantined himself and got tested.
- Thursday, November 26 – Thinking that perhaps he was suffering from seasonal allergies when his symptoms dissipated, Fr. Rob returned to work.
- Tuesday, December 1- Fr. Rob received positive test results.
- Thursday, December 3 – Ten days post symptom onset, Fr. Rob was cleared to return to public ministry by state and local health departments and the Archdiocese of Baltimore.
* Please note, due to the Thanksgiving break, neither Fr. Rob nor I had any contact with the OLPH School staff or students during this window of time.
My objective has always been to ensure that our campus remains as safe as possible, given what we know about the virus. While not foolproof, we have taken every measure possible to keep our community safe. With the delay in receiving Fr. Rob’s results, the disappearance of his symptoms, and the fact that he had not knowingly been in contact with anyone who was COVID-positive, we erroneously assumed it was allergies and it was safe for him to discontinue his quarantine. In retrospect, that decision is regrettable.
OLPH has remained compliant with CDC guidelines to:
- maintaining social distancing at 6-ft
- requiring masks at all times for anyone while on-campus
- providing access to hand sanitation stations
- frequently sanitizing public spaces with persistent microbe protectants.
Due to our compliance, we are hopeful that potential exposure has been mitigated to the best extent possible. Having said that, please seek testing if you are experiencing COVID-like symptoms or have been in direct contact with Fr. Rob or myself for longer than 15 minutes during a 24-hour period. Please note, symptoms of COVID-19 can appear 2-14 days after exposure. Please consult with your health care provider if symptoms develop, and if shortness of breath is severe, seek emergency treatment from an Emergency Department or call 911. When seeking medical treatment, please notify the health care provider in advance of your potential exposure.
Testing opportunities can be accessed by visiting the following link: https://coronavirus.maryland.gov/pages/symptoms-testing.
Locally, Merriweather Post Pavilion, coordinated by FirstCall Urgent Care, handles a large volume of testing daily and can administer rapid and full COVID tests. Details about the process are available per the following link: https://www.firstcallurgentcare.com/drivethru/.
I remain committed to maintaining the best possible safety practices so that the celebration of the liturgy and sacraments are not compromised. I understand you may still feel frustration and confusion. Know that my regret is sincere and I commit to dependable action and follow through. I invite you to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any concerns. Like you, I love our parish community and the Lord and desire a safe campus for all to encounter His healing presence in prayer and the Eucharist. During my quarantine, your intentions and the mission of our parish remain in my prayers.
OLPH Weekend Mass Schedule will be celebrated as follows:
Saturday, 12/5 4:30 pm – Fr. Jim Profitt
Sunday, 12/6 7:30 am – Fr. Rob Katafiasz
9:00 am – Fr. Jim Profitt
11:00 am – Fr. Rob Katafiasz
5:00 pm – Fr. Steven Roth
Our Lady of Perpetual Help, pray for us.
Live Jesus in our hearts, forever.
Father Mike Triplett
December 2, 2020, 4:50 PM
SPECIAL NOTIFICATION REGARDING COVID-19 CASE
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
During the ongoing pandemic, our parish has strived to keep our parish community’s well-being at the center of all our planning and decisions. As challenging as these times are, we are committed to proper safety measures, transparent communication, and responsibly adapting to emerging circumstances. We are grateful to you for your continued cooperation with these measures.
On Tuesday, Dec 1st, after an 8-day wait for test results, Associate Pastor Father Rob Katafiasz learned he had tested positive for the coronavirus. I’m pleased to report that he has experienced minimal symptoms and has been cleared for public ministry per the Howard County Health Department effective Thursday, Dec 3rd. Though I remain symptom-free, out of an abundance of care, I received a coronavirus test on the morning of Dec 2nd. I will remain absent from public ministry until I receive my results. Any individuals who may have been exposed have been contacted and are following the appropriate CDC guidelines for quarantining and testing.
Our parish leadership has been in communication with Archdiocesan officials to ensure that we have effectively addressed all areas of concern regarding our physical campus, including thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting any affected areas according to best-practice standards. Despite quarantine restrictions, Mass will be celebrated thanks to the generous assistance of area priests.
We recognize that this news may generate concern. Parishioners are encouraged to assess their situation and make decisions based on their health and comfort levels. The spread of COVID-19 remains a significant public health risk, and we each must act responsibly based on the most current health and safety recommendations. As always, anyone who is not comfortable attending in-person worship can participate through livestream.
For your consideration, please find our upcoming ministry schedule:
Daily Mass – Thursday, 12/3 – Saturday, 12/5 8:15 am will be celebrated by Fr. Rob Katafiasz
Confessions – Friday, 12/4 4-6 pm will be offered by Fr. Rob Katafiasz
Eucharistic Adoration – Friday, 12/4 2-10 pm
Fr. Rob Katafiasz will lead the Lessons and Carols, Festival of Praise – Friday, 12/4 7:30 pm
Weekend Mass Schedule
Saturday, 12/5 – 4:30 pm – Fr. Jim Profitt
Sunday, 12/6 – 7:30 am – Fr. Rob Katafiasz
9:00 am – Fr. Jim Profitt
11:00 am – Fr. Rob Katafiasz
5:00p m – Fr. Steven Roth
We ask that our parish community continue to hold in prayer and stand in solidarity with those suffering from COVID-19, most notably our neighbors and fellow parishioners.
Sincerely in Christ,
Fr. Mike Triplett
Cc: Archdiocese of Baltimore Office of Risk Management
December 2, 2020, 9 am
For, Wednesday, December 2nd:
Adoration will remain open from 2 pm – 7 pm.
Confessions are closed.
The parish office is closed.
Please check back for updates as additional information will be posted throughout the day.
December 2, 2020, 6 am
Dear Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish,
On the evening of December 1, 2020, the Parish learned of potential exposure to an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19.
As of the morning of December 2, 2020, until further information and results from testing come available, daily Mass will be available by Live Stream only. The Church will not be open for public Mass, and confessions are canceled. Further communications and schedule updates to follow.