From Rev’d James: I am pleased to let you know that after consultation with the churchwardens we have decided to recommence attendance at services in church. This will start with Morning Prayer from Monday 1st March, Holy Communion on Thursday 4th March, and Sunday services from 7th March.
We have taken this decision and risk assessment in the light of the general national situation, but also with reference to the substantial reduction in new coronavirus cases, and advanced rollout of the vaccination programme locally. I would stress that no-one should feel an obligation to return to church and you must make your own decision based on your situation. We will continue to provide access to worship online. On certain holy days in Lent and Easter we will also be holding short acts of worship in the churchyard, weather permitting, where there is the benefit of being outdoors and being able to sing.
When coming to church all of the precautions we have become used to will continue: hand sanitizer on entrance, face covering, social distancing (so seating in church will continue to be limited to about 50 at any one service). As last year, at services of Holy Communion the priest will administer the bread only. Congregational singing continues to be forbidden, and we await further information about this and also about the size of choir allowed. However the organ will be played and at least a group of 3 scholars or adult choir will be able to sing the liturgy. It is important that on arrival and at the end of services households do not mix with others and congregate in or outside of the church.
It is not possible for groups to meet indoors, and so Sunday Club and Youth Group will continue to meet on Zoom. There will be opportunities for children and families to gather at short acts of worship in the church garden on Mothering Sunday, Palm Sunday, Good Friday and Easter Day, and for the Pets Blessing service on 25th April. All ages can of course attend any of the services in church. Sunday Club will recommence as a group at church on Sunday 2nd May.
The church will continue to be open for daily prayer and reflection from after Morning Prayer and now days are longer will stay open until 5pm.