Queen’s House Update and Our Re-Open Saskatchewan Planning
May 25, 2020
We have enter the 66th day of our closure to our public and we now take great hope as we see the world outside our doors slowly emerging, albeit in a very cautious and carful manner, with new normals and responsibilities to guide us. We tentatively see Queen’s House as being informed by the reopening guidelines found in Phase 3, set to begin on June 8th, and Phase 4, still pending, of our provincial plan. We also recognize and understand that being permitted to open and being able to open offer 2 somewhat different realities.
A very real example of this challenge has been our decision to cancel our annual Oblate Scramble Golf Tournament because the uncertainties of such events make planning next to impossible. Each day, we are pleased to announce our fortunate Spring Fling Winners and to again express our appreciation to all of our supporters and congratulations to our winners. We are currently connecting with our community to determine what our groups are planning, what they see as their needs at this time and what might be required of us and of them over the next weeks and months in order to proceed safely and with confidence and certainty, and to be able to do so in a viable and doable way. We are working and planning to ensure that all of the necessary provisions that are required will be in place when our guests and groups return. To this end over the last 3 months, we have upgraded all of our computer stations and operating software and installed fiber optics. In addition, we are just completing the project to offer on line program registration and payment and that will allow and offer the e-commerce support for on line donations to easy the need for direct contact while retaining the more traditional methods of managing financial transaction crucial to our operational health. We are planning to offer our Summer Stillness Retreat with Fr. Ron Rolheiser in a virtual form and are finalizing the details of this program offering this week.
A recent quip attributed to Winston Churchill that has been circulating states “A crisis is a terrible thing to waste”. We are trying our best to live up to this call.
From all of us here at Queen’s House, we offer you our encouragement and our prayers. Take care, stay safe and May God continue to bless and protect us all!
STATUS UPDATE AND COVID19 INFORMATION
April 18, 2020
We have been closed to the public for the last month. It is difficult to believe, but this is our collective, new, temporary normal and we join the commitment of our community to get to the other side of this challenge safely and in a position to again be of practical service to and with our community. During this time, we have undertaken the following steps to ensure the safety and well-being of our immediate community:
- The majority of our staff are enrolled in the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) program which has allowed them to stay safe at home and to maintain their homes and families in the short term. We are most grateful for this support and pray often for the members of our medical and civic agencies.
- We are operating with a skeleton staff focused on completing upgrading, repair and maintenance projects already underway and managing the needs and requirements of local Oblate personnel and ministries and engaging in the community coordination efforts required to respond the the challenges of C-19. That Queen’s House has not yet been required in some practical way to assist with this challenge is seen as a definite positive sign – to be prepared but not needed is much better that the alternative.
- Because we were already knee deep in our Spring Fling Raffle when C-19 reminded us of our vulnerabilities, we have elected to continue with this initiative. We did not have the manpower to unwind, and have very much appreciated those of you who are participating and thereby supporting the ministry of Queen’s House. We judge by the number of calls that we receive requesting care and support that this ministry will be even more important to our community on the other side of this crisis.
March 20, 2020
Effective Wednesday, March 18, Queen’s House Retreat and Renewal Centre is temporarily closed to the public due to the COVID-19 virus and will remain closed at minimum until April 30.
This decision was made in consultation with the information we are receiving both locally and federally from political and health authority leadership, and from the leadership team of OMI Lacombe Canada, which owns and operates Oblate retreat centres across Canada.
We will be monitoring our local situation, and as the month of April unfolds, we will have a better sense as to whether we will be able to open our doors to the public in May, or if that date will need to be adjusted. Although our Oblates, Associates, Board Members, Staff and Volunteers are saddened by and regret this decision, we know wisely and truly that this is the most responsible decision that can be made given what we know about the virus and in anticipation of what other challenges are still to come.
Please take good care of yourself and others in the coming days.
Peace be with you. From all of us at Queen’s House.