Church of England Diocese of Blackburn Penwortham

MANDATORY USE OF FACE COVERINGS WHEN IN CHURCH

8 Aug 2020, 12:30 a.m.

Dear Parishioner,

WEARING OF FACE COVERINGS IN PUBLIC INDOOR SETTINGS -

NOW A LEGAL REQUIREMENT IN CHURCHES FROM SATURDAY 8TH AUGUST, 2020

Further to my letter of 24th July, about the strong advice by Government and the Church of England to wear a face covering in all public indoor settings including church buildings, this advice has now become mandatory as and from Saturday (8th August, 2020).

There are valid exemptions for some individuals and groups not to wear a face covering in these settings. However, this exemption does not apply to worshippers who should wear face coverings consistent with the requirements for any other public indoor space UNLESS they come within the group specifically mentioned by the Government in the regulations. The full list of exemptions can be found on the Church of England 

The Church of England also reminded everyone again that a face covering:-

must be worn by all those attending a place of worship, including ministers, worshippers, staff, volunteers, contractors and visitors, where there may be other people present; remembering that they are mainly intended to protect other people, not the wearer, from coronavirus COVID-19 and that they are not a replacement for physical distancing and regular hand washing.”

In addition, they pointed out that some people had started to wear visors with clear plastic shields over the face in place of face coverings so that the face is visible. The Bishop of London has pointed out that the purpose of these is different - they may protect the wearer but will not protect others. They are therefore only effective if worn in addition to a face covering.

With every blessing

Your Vicar Chris,