Dear Parent/ Guardian,
A meeting was held yesterday amongst the Downpatrick Priests and Principals regarding the finalised arrangements for the rearranged Sacraments of Holy Communion and Confirmation. Our current Primary 5 pupils will celebrate their First Holy Communion on Saturday 26th September at 10am in St Patrick’s Church. The Sacrament of Confirmation for First Year children will be celebrated in St Patrick’s Church on Tuesday 13th October at 5pm.
Due to the current guidelines in respect of the Covid 19 pandemic, it will not be possible to celebrate the sacraments in the traditional way. The arrangements below have been agreed in consultation with the Downpatrick Priests and Principals.
Holy Communion Arrangements
The service will begin at 10am and all in attendance should be seated before 9.30am.
Children will be seated with their class and parents/ family members will be seated together.
Children are only permitted to be accompanied by two family members. Given the restrictions within the church, other family members may not attend. The service will be available to view on the parish website. http://www.parishofdownpatrick.com/
Priests will instruct and guide children from the altar as children are unable to attend practice in the church.
Photographs will be taken afterwards outside the church.
Readings during the service will be reduced.
Children should wear normal First Holy Communion attire.
Your child’s Post Primary School has been contacted to ask them to release your child from school that day at 2.00pm to enable you to prepare for this special occasion.
As we are unable to prepare the children in the traditional way, your child’s Post Primary School has also been asked to share some preparation work with him/her and to provide a copy of the Confirmation Booklet which will be used.
A member of school staff will contact you next week via phone call to complete a Confirmation Card. This will include important information related to the sacrament including your child’s Confirmation Name (which should be based on a Saint’s Name) and the name of their Sponsor (who must be over sixteen and a Catholic).
Children are only permitted to be accompanied by two family members and their Sponsor.
Given the restrictions within the church, other family members may not attend on the evening. They will however be able to view the service on the parish website. http://www.parishofdownpatrick.com/
A seating plan will be in operation and staff who are in attendance on the evening will direct you to your assigned seat.
Children, parents and sponsors are to be seated by 4.30pm so that some instruction regarding the service can be shared.
Children should wear their new school uniform. (Post Primary)
***Adults and children should wear a face covering at all times whilst inside the church.***
I trust you find this information useful and appreciate your understanding regarding changes to the traditional way in which the sacraments are celebrated. If you require further assistance or have any additional queries, please contact the School Office.