Church of England Diocese of Lichfield Brereton & Rugeley

Lockdown 3 - Sunday Services move back Online

9 Jan 2021, 11 a.m.
Church_news From_the_Vicar Notices

We are suspending our Sunday morning services at St Augustine's, St Michael's, Brereton and the Church of the Holy Spirit, Etching Hill during the latest lockdown. This is obviously a difficult decision. BUT...... We will be streaming a morning service online at 10.30am on Sundays here on Facebook and on our YouTube Channel. You can also access the service directly on our website directly later in the day.

Furthermore, these churches will be open for private prayer during the week at specific times which will be posted and updated regularly.

Here is the letter sent by Revd David Evans, Team Rector for Brereton, Rugeley and Armitage Team Ministry:

Dear Friends,

In consultation with the Parochial Church Council (the PCC) I have made the decision to suspend our Sunday morning services held at St Augustine’s, St Michael’s and the Church of the Holy Spirit during the national lockdown that we have just begun. This is for the reasons set out below.

These church buildings will remain open for private prayer during the week at times that will be updated and advertised every week in our email bulletin which you can subscribe to by visiting clicking here clicking and entering your details.

The most compelling factors in making the difficult decision to suspend our in-person Sunday morning services are (1) the exponential rise in cases and hospital admissions, (2) our collective duty of care for and to protect the weakest, (3) the sense of solidarity that when one weeps, we all weep with them, when one celebrates we all celebrate together (Romans 12:15-16).

The key statistic in the mass of data coming out every day is the number of hospital admissions. We know that the number of people testing positive is rising exponentially, but we also know that the vast majority of those people will not be seriously ill. It is the number of hospital admissions that gives a direct and firm picture of the capacity of the health service to both care for people with Covid-19 and also those people who become acutely ill through stroke, heart attack and other causes. The capacity of the health service to carry out such varied things as timely treatment for cancer patients and routine operations like hip and knee replacements that allow people to stay fit and active are being directly impacted, so we must do everything we can to reduce the risk of exposure to this new highly catchable strain of the virus.

Another factor in coming to this decision is what it says to our communities if we stay open while everyone else is staying in lockdown and facing redundancy and serious hardship. There is an element of setting a good example in these very different and difficult circumstances.

On the positive side, we will be putting maximum effort into the production of our pre-recorded Sunday services which will go out on Facebook and our Your Tube Channel. Just to note, you can access the service after a couple of hours of the end of the service directly through our website without needing to log into Facebook or YouTube. We will try to be as creative as possible in putting these services together. Each service is two full days’ work by the time contributors have filmed their contributions and they have been edited together with hymns and songs etc.

Healing and loving God, pour upon all your people your grace and mercy. Strengthen the hands of all who care; all who deliver medicines and vaccines. Give fortitude, patience and grace to those working in intensive care units treating the sick. Give your comfort to all who are lonely and anxious and all who are concerned for loved ones. We look forward with real hope to the day when this pandemic is over. Remind us daily of how much you love us, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

With my prayers and very best wishes,

David

Revd David Evans
Team Rector, Brereton, Rugeley and Armitage Team Ministry
[email protected] Tel: 079 1941 6900