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Dear parishioner,

Happy Pentecost 2020!

As we return to Mass together this Sunday, May 31 at 9:00 AM, the following procedures will be in place for the health and safety of everyone. They are based on the directives from Bishop Stika which are posted on the St Joseph website ( or the Diocese of Knoxville website ( Please take time to read them. If you need a printed copy, please call the parish office (865-494-7746) and request it.

Fr Richard reemphasizes that anyone who feels unsafe or is sick or has a family member who is sick should not attend Mass. Until further notice, Bishop Stika has dispensed everyone from the obligation of attending Mass. Mass will continue to be live-streamed, but the time will change to 11:00 am.

Everyone must wear a face mask from the time they leave their vehicle until they return to it. The exception would be a small child/baby.
Everyone must maintain a social distance of at least 6 feet between individuals or a family traveling together at all times.
Everyone will enter through the social hall doors which will be propped open so touching the door handle will not be necessary. Hand sanitizer is available immediately upon entry.

Ushers will direct everyone where to sit beginning with the front pew. Half of the pews will remain empty and any chairs used will be 6 feet apart. Family members may sit next to each other. There will be seating for 50% capacity of the building.

Do not bring any extra "stuff" with you. There will be no paper bulletins. All materials have been removed from the pews and the building has been sanitized.
There will be no congregation singing, but there will be piano music and a cantor.

Collections baskets will be at the social hall door and near the communion station for your convenience.

At both St Joseph and St Therese, the following procedure will be in place for receiving communion:

1. Only Fr Richard will distribute communion.
2. Communion will be distributed AFTER Mass is over.
3. After the St Michael Prayer, ushers will indicate communion distribution and will begin with the front pew.
4. Take all of your belongings with you as you go to receive communion.
5. After receiving communion, proceed to exit the building. Those on choir side will exit by the choir door while those on the opposite side will exit through the northex.
6. Return immediately to your vehicle and have a blessed day!

The building will be sanitized immediately following Mass.

Weekday Masses resume on Tuesday and Thursday at 9:00 AM with the same procedures in effect.

Until further notice there will be no food or drink served. (Sorry no Father's Day Brunch!)

Other than Mass, all visitors to the church will need to sign in and have their temperature checked. Please remember that masks and social distancing are required at all times.

If you have any questions, please Louann at 865-748-5468 or Sally at 865-599-0137. You may also contact the office Tuesday-Thursday 8:30am to 12:30pm.


God Bless!
Fr. Richard Armstrong

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