05 Jul The Reopening of Church Services
Dear Church Friends,
You have of course heard that the Government has very recently issued guidance that places of worship may re-open for services from July 4th. This is welcome news. The Government guidance and subsequent national and regional church guidance contains much in terms of health & safety legislation and other legal aspects that need careful consideration – there is no quick-fix solution.
Our church buildings, in common with other local Church of England parishes, are managed through charitable status by the local PCC (Parochial Church Council) whose members are all Trustees of the charity. As such all activities, including our services, are the legal responsibility of myself, the PCC and the Wardens locally.
We therefore wanted to be in touch to let you know that the PCC has agreed that we should give ourselves a little more time to make sure we are in compliance with the extensive guidelines for safe meeting at this stage Our church services will therefore not resume on Sunday this July 5th or the following week. However we have set an aim to hold a service to start with at Saint Andrew’s Middleton on the 19th at 11.00 and on Sunday 26th at St John of Beverley, Salton at 10.00. Please note these are both aims, not set in stone. I know not all will feel it right to attend, and we will have to social distance that morning, so we can’t have a full capacity church, though markings will be put up where it is appropriate to sit. Communion is allowed, but again with social distancing. Each member of the body can receive the bread, but for now the wine is limited to the priest. The latest update also says we cannot use the small individual cups as the Methodist Church does?
We can start to hold restricted funerals (30 max) in our church buildings that are prepared for this, via having been cleaned and the social distancing advice etc displayed. and we are also now allowed to hold similarly restricted small weddings.
Please bear with us as we take seriously our responsibility to the worshiping community and our wider friends and neighbours in the parish. We will, of course, update as soon as we have more information. We will continue with worship via zoom, which on average 19 have attended. I do understand that this is not what most people want and many struggle with it, but we will be continuing with it until we are back to worshiping in our church buildings.
This Sunday there is a Zoom worship at 10.30.
Join Zoom Meeting https://us04web.zoom.us/j/7959003033?pwd=UHhZTlo3VzJ4RnFRZDJNdlFzUDZKUT09 Meeting ID: 795 900 3033 Password: 327742
The Peace of the Lord be always with you.
Rev Rob Barker