Unifying Postures

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

The County of Santa Clara Health Department has given us the green light to once again have our liturgical celebration of Holy Mass back in our beloved churches. As we begin to safely and reverently reopen our church doors, we saw this as an opportune time to unify certain aspects of the liturgical celebration of the Mass at both St. Nicholas church and St. William church so that all parishioners may feel at home when attending either.

The two official church documents guiding us in our decisions were: (from Vatican II) Sacrosanctum Concilium and the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM). The purpose of this short note is simply to inform you of the liturgical changes you should expect to experience upon returning to indoor Mass. Later, I will write a brief catechesis explaining the different elements of the Mass, such as gestures and bodily posture–why we stand, sit, kneel, bow & genuflect at certain parts of Mass. I will also explain why we use certain liturgical symbols, such as music, incense, bells, collections, sign of peace, etc.

Here I would like to note a few of the external unifying aspects that you will see at our indoor Masses:

    1. Kneeling – “Beginning after the singing or recitation of the Sanctus (Holy, Holy, Holy) until after the Amen of the Eucharistic Prayer, except when prevented on occasion by ill health.” (GIRM #43)
    2. Bells during Consecration – “A little before the consecration, when appropriate, a server rings a bell as a signal to the faithful. According to local custom, the server also rings the bell as the priest shows the host and then the chalice.” (GIRM #150)
    3. The Collection – this will be taken up after the General Intercessions – Ushers will use baskets with handles. The Second Collection, when present, will be taken up after the Prayer After Communion before or during the announcements.


As COVID-19 has caused many changes in our personal lives, it has also impacted our liturgical life: changes of Mass times; watching Mass online; having to make reservations to go to Mass; changes in where we sit; changes in how we receive Holy Communion. The list is a long one. This is why unity is so important at this moment and time.

I want to thank you for your patience, love and support that you have continued to show to our church and community during these times of uncertainty and change. Please know that you will always hold a special place in my heart as I hold you in my daily prayers.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Fr. John

Check our Parish Homepage each Wednesday for any changes in Mass locations and/or times as we begin to safely and incrementally migrate to indoor Church Masses.

Masses for this weekend (November 7th/8th)

Please go to our website to reserve your seats!

    • INDOOR: Sunday 8:00am and Sunday 5:00pm (French Community)
    • INDOOR: Saturday 5:00pm and Sunday 5:00pm
    • OUTDOOR: Sunday 9:00am and Sunday 10:00am

Help Our Families Give Our Children a Catholic Education


Please help us to reach our goal of $150,000!

Watch your mail this week for your copy of The Celtic – Standing Together for details!

Beautifying St. William and Helping the Environment

We are replacing the strip of lawn along El Monte on the St. William campus with colorful, drought-tolerant, low maintenance plants to conserve water, save money, and add beauty.


Several generous parishioners have provided most of the funding. Please put us over the top by sponsoring a plant. They range in price from $15 to $150. Consider the cost of coffee or lunch with a friend.


Drive-Thru Confessions

Every Saturday in St. William Parking Lot: 3:30PM – 4:30PM

Help Us Continue Our Mission

Now you can give online, by check, or send a text!

  • Use your phone and TEXT the word GIVE to 650-200-2585 and follow the prompts.
  • Donate ONLINE ~ make a one-time donation or setup a recurring gift
  • Hand deliver or mail your CHECK to St. Nicholas & St. William at 473 Lincoln. Ave., Los Altos, CA 94022