Father Peter Gower and Our Lady of Grace Church in Johnston found a way to hold Mass this weekend while circumventing a state order to limit gatherings to 10 or fewer people.
In lieu of a traditional Mass inside the building, Gower and his crew took to the parking lot across the street and required parishioners to remain in their cars as the pastor broadcasted an abridged ceremony over an FM signal. Each participant entered the packed parking lot and received a stapled collection of prayers, a parish schedule and an informational sheet.
Below the frequency to which parishioners were asked to tune their radios was a stern directive, underlined and bolded: “Under no circumstances are you to get out of your car for any reason.”
“We may initially experience some transmission issues, and you may not hear the Mass clearly,” the sheet read. “This is our first time trying this concept so we ask that you please be patient with us.”
Safety precautions were taken, as those who staffed the Mass wore gloves and Gower was set up at a table surrounded by orange traffic cones to keep his distance. Parishioners heeded the parish’s warning, staying in their cars with some rolling their windows down to get a better angle and hear Gower’s service more clearly.
A video containing a small portion of the service can be found on the Johnston Sun Rise Facebook page.
(Sun Rise photos)