A Statement from our Pastor, Very Rev. John P. Bambrick, V.F.
A matter relating to the preparedness of a special needs child in St. Aloysius Parish to receive First Holy Communion has generated a great deal of confusion and concern, which I would like to address.
While we had tried to adapt our preparation process to accommodate the child’s special needs, there was an unfortunate breakdown in communication that led to a misunderstanding. A delay in receiving the Sacrament was discussed until readiness could be assessed; there was never to be denial of Communion to this child.
With the guidance and support of Bishop David O’Connell, we were able to discern a way for the child to receive First Holy Communion without any delay. We have made the family aware of this development and hope to be able to meet with them to discuss it. Their child continues to be welcome in our program, and will be able to receive First Holy Communion this year.
I regret that this matter evolved as it did and, for our part, acknowledge that it could have been handled differently. It is extremely unfortunate that, as a result of this controversy, there are families with special needs children who may now doubt the Church’s commitment to welcome all children into their religious education programs. Nothing could be further from the truth; special needs children and adults are welcomed and ministered to in parishes across this Diocese, and throughout the Church, including this Parish.