Covid-19 Advice, September 2020
Coronavirus Covid-19 Update
Most of our churches in the Heart of Eden Benefice are opening at least once a month, with some also open on Wednesdays. We are in principle leaving 72 hours between uses, and if this is not possible commit ourselves to a thorough cleaning between uses.
Those attending services are required to maintain 2 metre distancing, and wear face masks, as well as using the hand sanitiser provided, when entering and leaving the church building.
Public Worship is also still On-line on our YouTube Channel
Our Mission Community’s YouTube Channel will change focus from September, as more services are available. There are more than 80 acts of worship and reflections on the dedicated site for the Heart of Westmorland Mission Community. Please continue to use these as a resource.
Daily Hope, a national phone line, still offers music, prayers and reflections as well as full worship services from the Church of England at the end of a telephone line. The line – which is available 24 hours a day on 0800 804 8044 – has been set up particularly with those unable to join online or live church services during the period of restrictions in mind.
A number of initiatives to help the Church to pray at this time are available on the national Church’s website. Please keep an eye on it as more resources become available including for Easter.
In addition, we are pleased to recommend “Time To Pray” a downloadable App for your phone.
Communications and Online Groups
We have also started using technology such as WhatsApp and Zoom to conduct both small groups and necessary business meetings.
Church Meetings & Governance
Church meetings have restarted in different forms.
Our Annual Parochial Church Meetings (APCMs) are being called during September and October.
o To extend the period of office for the current Churchwardens until their successors have been appointed and
o To extend the admission date for Churchwardens beyond 31 July 2020 to 31 January 2021.
Weddings, Funerals and Christenings (Baptisms)
In line with the Government’s more recent instructions, it is now possible for weddings and baptisms to take place where a risk assessment is in place, and numbers are generally limited by the size and layout of each church, but must not exceed 30. For emergency baptisms please ring our Rector, Revd Clive Hicks, on 017682 54409. Funerals can still go ahead in church as well as at the graveside or crematorium only, with immediate family and friends in attendance and essential physical distancing measures in place.
We are pleased to confirm that all our Churches are now open for specific services (see the Calendar section).
This is a complex situation, susceptible to mixed messages and misinformation, which can have serious consequences. We are doing all we can to ensure a co-ordinated approach across the Deanery, with the Diocese, the National Church and our Methodist partners. Please refer only to official information and try to abstain from sending your own communications about the current situation or the Church’s response. If we have overlooked anything relevant to your situation, please contact Clive.
We are continuing to provide pastoral care, by telephone and electronic communication but also face-to-face wherever possible. That means that we will can now offer home communion and home visits, following government guidance on social distancing and the use of face masks. If you would like someone to talk to, or to pray with you, or to offer spiritual guidance, please use the contact details given elsewhere on these pages, and the Rector.
Upper Eden Foodbank
Please continue to support our local foodbank. Details of needs and offers are available here.
We encourage people to be in touch with us, particularly if you are anxious. Revd Clive Hicks (Rector) and Revd Peter Boyles (Associate Priest) ask you to be patient in waiting for a response, but we do recommend that you phone us if you have a pastoral issue and leave a message if required.
Our prayers are with you all.
Clive Hicks Peter Boyles
Rector Associate Priest
T: 017683 62436 T: 017683 54161
M: 075852 66757
Heart of Eden Benefice
The Heart of Eden Benefice is part of the wider Heart of Westmorland Mission Community, alongside ecumenical partners.