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Are you thinking about visiting Saint John Vianney Catholic Parish Church in Brookfield?
Here’s some of what to expect when you visit and join us for Mass.
Saint John Vianney is located on the corner of Gebhardt Road and Calhoun Road in the heart of Brookfield. The main entrance is just north of the intersection.
Ample handicap parking is available near the main entrance. There is room for wheelchairs in the front right and left sections of the church. All doors are wheelchair accessible and the front doors have buttons to make them automatically open.
We offer personal assistive listening devices for your use. Please see a hospitality minister before the start of Mass.
Pews are laid out in a semi-circle around the altar. You are welcome to sit anywhere. Pews in the front section have an audio loop for people with hearing aids. Ask a hospitality minister for more information on using this option.
There are 3 restroom locations. Restrooms are located in the 1) narthex near the reconciliation rooms, 2) down the main stairwell leading to the church hall, or 3) near the parish offices.
Babies and children of all ages are welcome. If your baby is continues to cry, there are two special rooms at the back of church to assist you. You may also walk into the hallways or narthex. The audio from Mass is available in all these spaces.
The pews contain books with a selection of songs as well as readings and the service of the Mass. Orders of Worship (half-page booklets) that list each Mass’s readings and songs are available from the Hospitality Ministers or available in baskets when you enter church.
Our pews contain kneelers; we kneel during the traditional kneeling time of the Mass, after the “Holy, Holy, Holy. We remain standing for the “Lamb of God.” It is also good practice to kneel in a prayer of thanksgiving after receiving the Eucharist. Those physically unable to kneel may sit during the kneeling time. We believe kneeling is a sign of respect to God and respect for the place you are visiting.
What to Wear
We encourage respectful dress for Mass and other liturgies and services. You will find people wearing everything from shorts and tee shirts to suits and ties.
Keep Your Cool
The church is air conditioned.
Our Sunday services are a celebration of Mass and include prayers, songs, readings from the Bible and a reflection on those readings.
If you are not familiar with the order of Mass, the Order of Worship or the books in the pew racks can guide you.
The celebration of Mass at Saint John Vianney lasts from 55 to 75 minutes. Except for exceptional personal reasons, it is polite to arrive before Mass starts and stay until the end of Mass after the priest and other ministers process out of church.
Who’s Up There?
The priest is the principle celebrant of the Mass. He is assisted by 2 altar servers on either side. Occasionally, another guest priest or a deacon — an ordained man who is not a priest but who has the ability to preach in the Church and assist at the altar — also assist. Those people will be on the altar of the church during the entire Mass. Selected members of the congregation will go to the altar area to proclaim those readings. The cantor will do the same for certain songs and sung prayers. Eucharistic ministers will gather around the altar before taking their distribution stations.
We like to sing. A cantor leads the congregation in song, as well as sung prayers and an adult or children’s choir sings during certain times of the year. Accompanying instruments sometimes include piano, organ, drums, guitar, trumpet, bells and violin. You will be part of a fuller spiritual experience by praying not only in your heart, by speaking, but also by singing along, even if you don’t consider yourself a natural singer.
In the months before Easter, a group of people studying to become Roman Catholic may leave Mass mid-point to reflect on the Word of God as proclaimed during the first half of Mass. They are a part of the RCIA program.
During the Saturday 4:30 pm and Sunday 11:00 am Mass, young people in grades K4–4 are welcome to leave during the readings. They have the opportunity to participate in a youth-oriented segment of the Mass called “Children’s Liturgy of the Word.” They will return in time for the Eucharist or communion.
Occasionally, we’ll have a baptism during Mass or a special blessing, such as for students, teachers, or those preparing for the sacraments.
Collection baskets are passed person-to-person down each pew. The collection is used to support the various ministries of the Church, including charitable outreach. Occasionally, a second collection will be taken for a missionary or some other need or a reverse collection with items of food that will be used for our own and other area food pantries.
After praying the Lord’s Prayer — the Our Father — we exchange a sign of peace. The sign of peace is usually a handshake or, between couples and families, a kiss. If you are not comfortable with this gesture or have a bad cold, don’t feel obligated to participate; simply offer a nod and a wave.
Roman Catholics not in a state of serious sin and members of various other Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches are those who choose to receive Communion. We use real wine, and believe the bread and wine to be totally transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ. Receiving the Eucharist is the climax of our prayer as Catholics and symbolizes and makes real our unity as a Church
At Communion time, ministers will bring the Body and Blood of Christ to various stations in the front of the church. We process from the pews to the distributor, and follow the practice of bowing our head before receiving the Sacrament. The Body of Christ may be received in the hand or can be placed directly into the mouth opening the mouth and holding out the tongue. The Blood of Christ is distributed in common cups; the distributor wipes the cup clean after each recipient’s sip. It is not appropriate to take a host and dip it into the cup. To read more background concerning “etiquette” surrounding the Eucharist, see the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website.
A parish includes community life and it is sometimes necessary to include certain parish announcements after communion. We try to always keep this as brief as possible but sometimes this may be a little more extensive or even include a guest speaker. Please stay during this time so as to find new ways you can be part of this community.
Each week the parish publishes a bulletin. It will be distributed by the Hospitality Ministers when leaving church. We encourage you to read it. It is the primary source of information on the life of the parish. You may also sign up to receive the bulletin each week via email. Sign up is at the bottm of every Parish webpage in the footer section.
Every second Sunday of the month, after 9:00 am and 11:00 am Mass we have donuts, coffee and juice in the church hall (on the lower level). Come on down.
Got a Question?
Stop and chat with the priest after Mass. Before Mass, hospitality ministers at church entrances can answer your questions. If you have a need during Mass, including a need for medical attention, hospitality ministers in each section can assist you. If we can assist you in any other way, contact us! www.stjohnv.org
Want to Join?
If you have questions about our parish or would like information on registering as a parishioner, please see the priest after Mass or attend one of our new parishioner registration sessions after 4:30 pm Saturday Mass and after 9:00 am. Mass on the third Sunday of the month.
Informally Staying Connected
If you travel and visit us occasionally or want a way to keep in touch with us but keep your registration at another parish, an easy way to do this is follow our Facebook page. Like Us on Facebook and or Follow Us on Twitter. The links are found on the bottom of every webpage in the footer.