Bishop Silva Memo to Diocese March 27, 2020

Messages (with links) regarding Covid-19 from Father `Alapaki Kim and Bishop Silva:

Aloha Kākou,

Due to the first local transmission of the Covid-19 virus and the growing number of people being found to be infected, The Diocese has cancelled all Masses from 12 noon on 17 March until 31 March.  The Bishop has given dispensation for Mass attendance for this period out of an abundance of caution.

Individual confessions can still be heard by appointment only.

All Parish meetings and Religious education classes are cancelled until 31 March.

Funerals cannot be scheduled during this time period.

Office will be opened, but on shortened hours.  People need to call the office for business rather than physically come as the office staff will not open the doors..

The Bishop has given permission for this Thursday’s feeding of our brothers and sisters to take place , but only with the proper safety precautions.  The food can only be distributed boxed, and it has to be consumed off campus.

At the end of March, this situation will be re-examined to determine if these restrictions will be lifted, or extended.

May God protect us all.  Saint Damien of Moloka`i, pray for us.  St. Marianne Cope of Moloka`i, pray for us.

Ke aloha nō,
‘o Pa `Alapaki Kim

From Bishop Silva:


To: Clergy, Religious and Laity of the Diocese of Honolulu and all Visitors to the Hawaiian Islands
From: Most Reverend Larry Silva, Bishop of Honolulu
Date: March 16, 2020
Subject: Response to the Covid-19 Pandemic in the Diocese of Honolulu

As we are all aware, we are in a unique time in which a pandemic that has had deadly effects needs to be halted. The Diocese of Honolulu has already sent out directives about how to keep as safe as possible during our liturgies and our spiritual, educational and social gatherings. The situation has rapidly changed, however, and in light of the Center for Disease Control’s most recent strong recommendations for containment of this contagious virus, I am now offering these directives to be followed in all parishes, ethnic communities, and oratories in the Diocese of Honolulu.

1. The public celebration of Mass will be canceled in all locations, effective at noon on March 17 through Tuesday, March 31, inclusive. I am dispensing all the faithful from the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays during this period. (Please see below for more information.)

2. Funeral Masses/Services and Weddings that are already scheduled to take place during this period may proceed as scheduled, but families are encouraged to limit the number of guests so that the necessary social distancing can be accomplished. Baptisms and other services scheduled during this time are to be postponed, and no other such services are to be scheduled during this period.

3. Communal Penance Services are canceled. Priests will avail themselves for individual confessions by appointment or according to the schedule published by each parish.

4. Pastors are to do all they can to have their churches open throughout the day for private prayer.

5. All other gatherings of people in our parishes and schools are to be canceled so that social distancing can be practiced. Consideration should be given to meetings via social media platforms, if needed.

6. The Chrism Masses scheduled on Hawaii Island (March 24), Kauai (March 26), and Maui (March 31) are canceled. The Chrism and holy oils will be consecrated and blessed on Oahu on April 2, but at this point only the clergy and the liturgical ministers of that Mass will be invited to attend. The holy oils will later be sent to the Neighbor Islands.

7. The Mass for the Launch of 500 Years of Christianity in the Philippines Hawaii Celebration scheduled for April 4 is canceled and will be celebrated at a later date after the current crisis subsides.
The decision to cancel Masses is a very serious decision that was not taken lightly and that was made after consultation with the members of the Priests Council. Priests are to offer private Masses for the spiritual welfare of the people they serve, and pastors especially are still obliged to offer the Mass pro populo (for the people of the parish) every Sunday.

On Friday, March 27, we will reassess the situation and decide about the best course of action after March 31.

While nothing can fully replace the celebration of the Eucharist, in which we physically encounter the risen Lord Jesus as he offers us his Body and Blood for nourishment, all are encouraged to keep the Lord’s day holy by spending time in prayer and reflection. Mass will be celebrated without the congregation and live-streamed from the Cathedral Basilica of Our Lady of Peace in Honolulu each Sunday at 9:00 a.m. and can be accessed at or

In addition, other parishes may livestream the private Mass of the priest, so check your parish’s website to see if this service is offered. EWTN (Eternal Word Television Network – Channel 30 for cable customers; Channel 261 for Dish customers) broadcasts Mass daily.

The Scripture readings for Sunday, Solemnity, and Weekday Masses are available at All are encouraged to spend time reflecting on these Scriptures, especially on Sundays.

During this time of crisis, let us pray for one another and for the health and safety of all in our community. For many, “fasting” from the Mass will be the most difficult fast they have undertaken, but we pray that it will help us be even more appreciative of this great gift of Christ’s ongoing presence with us.
Finally, I present this prayer to you for your daily reflection and for sharing with your friends:



[by Bishop Larry Silva; March 12, 2020]

Dear God of all the living, you sent your Son Jesus to heal us from illness and sin. We turn to his healing power in this time of anxiety over the pandemic of this potentially deadly virus.

St. Damien and St. Marianne Cope dedicated their lives to service of those who had an infectious disease. St. Marianne Cope said, “I am not afraid of any disease,” because she was confident of your power to save. At the same time, she took prudent precautions of hygiene to assure that she and her Sisters would not be infected.

Let us learn from this example to put our trust in you to save us from the ravages of disease and to take prudent measures to prevent its spread. Guide us to know when to isolate ourselves from the possibility of infection, but never let anyone be left without the care and concern of others in the community.

As our Diocese of Honolulu has been dedicated to the Divine Mercy, we pray with confidence, “Jesus, I trust in you."


Aloha from Saint Rita Catholic Church, Nānākuli, Hawaii


Parish Mission Statement - "We, the people of God of St. Rita Parish in Nānākuli, are united in our belief and in our commitment to Jesus Christ. In the spirit of Aloha, we respond to Christ's mission of love and freedom with our care, concern and communal action. This is expressed in the stewardship of our treasure through tithing and in the gift of our time and talents through shared ministries.

As a fast growing rural parish with a large Hawaiian population we feel a special calling to stand together in truth and justice for the rights of the first people (kanaka maoli) of this land. As part of the universal Church, our outreach extends beyond our boundaries to the global community and we affirm the human dignity of all peoples.

As a parish family we enthusiastically participate in bringing about God's reign of peace. We continue to evangelize, welcome and invite all of God's people to St. Rita Parish."

Parish Values - With our deep roots as a mission church to Native Hawaiians, the modern parish community:

1. Expresses our faith in the use of 'olelo makuahine (the mother tongue -- the Hawaiian language) in addition to English in liturgy.

2. Expresses our worship through artistic traditions to include:
    a. Hula and oli as a sacred gesture
    b. Use of native implements including ipu hekeole, pu ili, uli uli, pahu in addition to guitar, drums and ukulele
    c. Use of native flowers and plants in church environment
    d. Use of koa and other native hardwoods in altar, tabernacle, crucifix, and sacred vessels
    e. Use of lei in liturgy (placing lei around the Book of the Gospels, placing lei around consecrated hosts and chalice)
    f. Congregational singing in English and Hawaiian languages using traditional Hawaiian melodies
    g. Use of Samoan fine mat when preparing the altar for Liturgy of the Eucharist

3. Support our church 'Ohana that are nurtured by and contribute to the larger community by incorporating all cultures and traditions into our expression of what it means to be the universal and Catholic church:
    a. Celebrate annual Misa de Gallo Christmas Novena
    b. Celebrate birthdays and wedding anniversaries through community blessing before Mass
    c. Welcome all visitors with lei greeting
    d. Extend our parish outreach to meet needs of the poor including maintaining our parish emergency food pantry and monthly "Feeding the Brethren" community hot dinners
    e. Maintain sister parish relationships with other parishes
    f. Encourage new parishioners to get actively involved in parish activities
    g. Support the Kupuna Project in services to our elderly 


Proposed future St. Rita Nānākuli church


Whatever you do in life, do for the glory of God


Most of us will probably never cure anyone from leprosy or any other disease. How, then, are we to imitate the Christ who worked such wonders? We are called to give glory to God by using our own gifts with courage and generosity, as Jesus did. We are called to seek not our “own benefit but that of the many.” risking our own pride, status, time, money, or pleasure for the common good. We are called to tell everyone the good news about what Christ does for us—and through us—every day. Then everything we do will be for the glory of God.

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Saturday - 5 pm
Sunday - 7 am, 9 am, 5 pm
Monday thru Friday - 8 am

Confessions: Saturday 4 - 4:45 pm or by appointment


Office Hours

Monday - Friday: 9 am - 4 pm (break for lunch at noon)

Food Bank Hours

Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 9 am - 11 am


Saint Rita Nānākuli Catholic Church
89-318 Farrington Highway
Nānākuli, Hawaii  96792