Parish roundup: Mass in flu season; school races to stay open; music grants

Catholics hold hands during a 2016 Mass in Sioux City, Iowa. (CNS/Catholic Globe/Jerry L. Mennenga)

Catholics hold hands during a 2016 Mass in Sioux City, Iowa. (CNS/Catholic Globe/Jerry L. Mennenga)

by Peter Feuerherd

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No more hugging or handholding at Mass. Church officials in New Mexico and Pennsylvania warn parishioners to keep their distance this flu season.

Parishioners at St. Peter Church in Cameron, Wisconsin, prayed incessantly for the return of kidnapped 13-year-old Jayme Closs. They are now offering prayers of thanksgiving.

A Catholic school in Reading, Ohio, needs to raise $200,000 to keep from closing, after two parishes pulled the plug on funding. Now it's a race against the clock to keep St. Nicholas Academy alive.

Church music publisher Oregon Catholic Press offers grants to parishes to improve liturgical music and worship. Last year, the company gave away $200,000.

The Philadelphia Historical Commission protects a historical shrine, much to the chagrin of the archdiocese.

Bishop Ronald Gainer of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, meets with parishioners concerned about the future of the church and the sex abuse crisis.

Bishop Richard Malone of Buffalo, New York, wants Catholics to look beyond their anger and support Catholic Charities.

[Peter Feuerherd is a correspondent for NCR's Field Hospital series on parish life and is a professor of journalism at St. John's University, New York.]

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