My dear sisters and brothers
I hope that this letter finds you well. I know many of you will be anxious for yourselves and those that you love - I also know that you are keen to support others in your neighbourhood. Thank you for all that you are doing and have done to support the most vulnerable.
The times we are living in are changing rapidly, we at St. Luke's are trying to ensure that we respond in the most appropriate and creative way whilst encouraging the well being of all connected with our community.
We are closing your church building to public worship. This is following instructions from both Government and our Bishops. We will, however continue to shine light and love and hope and enable St. Luke's to continue as a community of good news. We will need to find different ways of being, we have made a start on what this new way might look like. We also know that this will evolve as something won't work and you will come back to me with far better ways of being!
Our plans today are:
To suspend all services of public worship with immediate effect. We will be live streaming a simplified service on YouTube at 11.00 on Sunday morning;
(Use this link to tune in, set a reminder or watch on catchup. Liturgy and Lyrics will be included)
To begin a service of morning prayer at 9.30 every day (not Sundays) - we would invite you to email your prayer requests to [email protected] and these will be prayed for at this time. For the time being the church will be open at this time and therefore an opportunity for you to come and light a candle - we will need to monitor this and ask that we maintain social distancing etc.
We know that we want to support our neighbours and church family, we have therefore divided up the electoral roll (our only database of members) into smaller groups and will be asking a member of that group to coordinate that local response. ensuring that everyone is contacted, perhaps setting up a WhatsApp group to aid local communication. Martin, the Churchwardens and I will communicate with those coordinators and contact others as appropriate. I know that not all our family are on the Electoral Roll - if this is you please do send your contact details to Tina [email protected] with your permission for us to contact you in this way.
We would encourage you to give to Foodbanks, contact those nearby (especially those you know are in high risk categories) to see what we can do practically, to be a people of prayer, especially joining us in spirit (if not in person) at our 9.30 time of prayer.
We will have more updates - please do read these as they come, we will try to keep them as concise as we can. These plans, as I said will continue to evolve, please be prepared for more church emails than just the regular once a week!
I know that this community has been a beacon for many of you in the past, I know that you will ensure that it continues to be so in the present difficulties.