As you are preparing to return to campus in a few weeks, here are some guidelines for what to expect this semester at Catholic Campus Ministry. As we get additional guidance from Virginia Tech, these guidelines may change.
August Mass times
Week of August 2nd: No Masses.
Week of August 9th: Sunday 10 am, Monday-Friday 12:30 pm AND 5:30 pm. Saturday 9 am. Sign up for Sunday Mass here. All Masses are at the Newman House
Week of August 16th: We are not sure yet about Mass times and locations. Check back soon for updates.
Our house hours will be adjusted as students come back to campus. We are asked to have a staff member present at all times that the building is open. To reflect this requirement, the following house hours will be in effect (for now).
Sunday Aug 8th: 9 am to 11:30 am
Monday, Aug 9th-Thursday Aug 12th: 8:30 am to 6:30 pm
Friday, Aug 13th-Saturday, Aug 14th: 8:30 am to 10 pm
Sunday, Aug 15th: Begin new semester house hours
Regular Semester Hours
Sunday: 9 am – 12 pm and 4 pm to 10 pm
Monday-Friday: 8:30 am to 10 pm
Saturday: 9 am to 11 am and 4 pm to 10 pm
Students are required to social distance while inside the Newman House as well as on the property outside. What does that mean?
You should try to maintain six (6) feet of space between you and everyone else. Sometimes that is not possible (moving through a hallway, for example), but that is the general rule. Students should also refrain from general physical contact (hugs, shaking hands, the kissing cheek thing that some Europeans do, etc.)
The indoor and outdoor spaces will have seating that is socially distanced so you don’t need to bring your measuring tape.
Face Coverings Indoors
While inside the Newman House, you must wear a face covering at all times. If you are going to be inside for several hours or just for a few minutes to use the restroom, you must wear a face covering as soon as you enter the building.
The only time you may remove your face covering is when you are in a room, by yourself or with your roommate, and the door is closed.
Meeting with a small group, meeting with a staff member, sitting in the chapel, studying with your friends, etc. In all of these instances, you need to have your mouth and nose covered.
Face Coverings Outdoors
While outside the Newman House (on the grounds), you must wear a face covering at all times.
The only time you may remove your face covering is when you are able to socially distance at least six (6) feet from others.
So, playing cornhole, have your mask on. Sitting close to other people, have your mask on. An event where there are lots of people walking around, have your mask on.
You are sitting with a few friends (maybe a small group) and your chairs are all 6 feet apart, then you can have your mask down.
We are still waiting to get further guidance from the university regarding Masses. Our plan right now (which could change any day) is to have Daily Mass at the Newman House Monday through Friday at 12:30 pm and 5:30 pm. The earlier Mass would be in the Great Room and require a reservation ahead of time. The later Mass would be on the volleyball court beginning the week of August 17th and no reservation would be necessary. There would be a procedure to “sign in” for Mass, but no need to do so ahead of time.
Sunday Mass has not yet been determined. We are waiting to hear back from the Virginia Tech about a space on campus that will fit our needs. We are very hopeful that there will be Sunday Mass, we just don’t know yet. We have several ideas if Virginia Tech does not have the ability to meet our needs with a space.
Confessions will continue to happen in a similar manner as before.
We plan to have adoration in the Great Room once classes begin.
There are a whole host of cleaning practices that will be implemented to keep our space safe. Some of this will be done by our staff, while in some instances we will ask students to clean areas themselves. For example, if you spend some time in the chapel, we will ask you to wipe down your chair with a Clorox wipe when you are finished so the seat can be used by someone else.
Large events like Sunday Supper, Fall retreat, tailgates, and big welcome week events are going to change this year. As those events come up in our calendar, we will make adjustments to these events so they can continue with our new guidelines, or create new events and opportunities to help us be safe and healthy when our regularly scheduled events are not able to happen.
What doesn’t change is the core of who we are and what we are about. We are about falling in love with Jesus and sharing his redeeming love with others. That will continue to happen.
Our staff and missionaries are still here to love you and serve you. Our bible studies are here to form you and support you. Your friends are here in difficulties and in those moments of joy.
We look forward to seeing you soon.