As with all churches and places of worship in the UK, St. Edward's has been firmly locked - much to the distress of congregation and villagers alike. This has also proved awkward with our need to repair the chapel roof after the lead theft (see other news) and potentially with the repair of our bells (again, see other news story).
The good news is that we are now able to open for private prayer - albeit in a very restricted fashion. Pro tem St Edward's will be open for private prayer every day from 9.30am to 4pm. These arrangements will be subject to change - particularly when work on the bells is being done and later when work on the monuments start. So watch this space! There are rules of course and access to much of the church will be restricted but you very welcome to come in, pray and reflect.
In common with so many charities we have also been hit financially. Whilst regular donors have kept up their giving - mainly through direct bank deposits - we have been hard hit since all our regular fund-raising events have had to be cancelled. Our anticipated loss this year is several thousand pounds which we can ill afford. As with many churches, the summer and early autumn events top up regular giving. But the loss is far greater than the revenue. These events bring together the village in a very positive way. So, whilst we pray for the Lord's provision financially we also pray that the closeness of the village community will not be lost as undoubted changes in our pattern of living take effect. For those who would like to support the work the simplest way of giving is to give instruction to your bank via a one-off or even a standing order. You can find a download of a form to do this below.
Alternatively we are investigating on-line donation agencies. Be aware that some of these may take an administration fee from your donation. So far we are registered with Stewardship https://www.stewardship.org.uk - clicking on this link will enable you to set up a Stewardship account from which donations can be given to any charity with them including St Edward's Church.
So far the virus has not hit the village to any extent medically but there is not doubt that many of our village will feel its effect for some time.