Update concerning covid-19 on 14th August 2020
As of 8th August 2020 Government requirements concerning the use of face coverings in church buildings have changed. The Church of England, and ourselves at St Edmund’s, continue to cautiously explore the way forward.
Face coverings are now mandatory on public transport and in a range of indoor venues including places of worship and church halls. While there are exemptions this is a legal requirement.
A face covering is something which safely covers the nose and mouth. You can buy reusable or single-use face coverings. You may also use a scarf, bandana, religious garment or hand-made cloth covering but these must securely fit round the side of the face.
Those who are leading services or events in a place of worship, and those who assist them (for instance by reading, preaching, or leading prayer) do not always need to wear a face covering, although one should be worn especially if physical distancing cannot be maintained (i.e. distributing consumables) This exemption does not apply to worshippers, who should wear face coverings consistent with the requirements for any other public space.
What precautions should be taken at the distribution of Holy Communion?
Once the president has received Holy Communion in both kinds, he or she should put on a face covering and sanitize their hands.
Any other minister assisting with the distribution should then remove his or her face covering and should then sanitize hands before receiving the consecrated bread. The assisting minister should then put the face covering back on and sanitize hands again before receiving the ciborium or paten.
Each communicant should extend their hands to receive Holy Communion, with face covering in place. They should then lower or unloop the face covering, consume the consecrated bread, and then replace the face covering before moving back to their place in the congregation.
The bread should only be administered into the hand with care being taken not to touch communicants’ hands. If this does happen, both the person distributing and the communicant should sanitise their hands immediately.
Church open for worship
We are now holding small services in church once a fortnight, including services of Holy Communion. If you would like to come along it would be great to see you. Track and Trace means we have to keep a record of who attends. Please contact Rev Paul (by phone or e mail) and he will ‘book you in’.
We are also exploring other options, including outdoors and at Ringland.
In addition Rachel will be resuming the Tuesday evening meditation with Compline during August – dates to be announced.
The livestreams are all continuing, and we are hoping these will include livestreams from the church building soon!
The church building will continue to be open for personal, private, prayer. St Edmund’s is open from 9am to 5pm each day.
Health and safety guidelines warn that it is safest for as few people as possible to come into contact with one another so we will not have any people welcoming those who come.
Please help to reduce the risk of infection by –
• USING a face covering while in the church building.
• USING the hand gel as you enter and as you leave the building.
• OBSERVING social distancing at all times.
• TAKING a paper cross to put on your seat before you leave. This will help others to know when a seat has already been used. If you have a prayer request please write this on the underside of your cross, (these will be collected at the end of each day).
Please AVOID those areas of the church that have been roped off or covered.
In particular note the following:
1, The kitchen is roped off and bookcases covered.
2, Bibles, leaflets and toys have been removed.
3, The toilet will not be open and the key will not be available.
There are notices in the porch and church reminding everyone of these requirements.
For further information contact Revd. Paul Seabrook on 01603 868217 or by email at [email protected]
The Church of England will be offering a national weekly service which will be broadcast online each Sunday via social media and daily audio of prayer during the day and night prayer will also be available.
At St Ed's we continue to encourage everyone to do what they can to support food banks which will be needed more than ever at this time.
For the time being the Foodbank collection bin continues to be (outside the front door) at the Rectory, at 173 Taverham Road.