You will be well aware of the introduction this week of a third ‘Lockdown’ in England which has restricted outside-the-home activities for all of us to an essential minimum.
Since the announcement on Monday evening, the leaders of our five churches have been considering the new situation and seeking information and advice, and we have decided to:
Close all our churches for public worship for the next two Sundays - 10th and 17th January, as a 'firebreak'.
This is a difficult decision we have not taken lightly, but we believe it is the right one given:
The higher risks in gathering together because of
The 'efficiency' of the new Covid variant in its transmission from person to person,
the rapid increase in the number of cases,
and bearing in mind the vulnerable nature of many of our volunteers and members.
In addition to this we seek to set an example to our local community, and to express our solidarity with our local health care staff, and to the schools and businesses who have been directed to stay closed for the greater public good.
We currently expect a limited re-opening at one or more of our churches following this two week period, and we will keep you informed of these plans as they develop. We will of course continue to worship together each Sunday on the internet, and to pray for and support each other and our community in the Lord’s name.
St Matthews Vicarage, Thursday 7<sup>th</sup> January 2021