Church of England Diocese of St.Albans St. Stephen, St. Albans

Tier 4 guidance

23 Dec 2020, 10 a.m.

The surge in cases in Hertfordshire and the rise in the new strain of coronavirus in the SE of England means that we must all be even more careful and vigilant at church. As you know the main message of tier 4 is STAY AT HOME, but the Government is allowing churches to remain open. Some churches have decided to close despite this provision because of the seriousness of the situation. We have decided to continue with our Christmas plans, but to do so we must all abide rigidly to the guidelines:

Wear your face covering before you enter church and keep it on at all times.

Sanitise your hands as soon as you enter

Go straight to your seat and do not mingle or talk to others in church as you prepare for worship.

Ensure you are always 2m from anyone not in your household as you walk to your seat.

At St Stephen's church, to ensure everyone's safety, at the end of the service the sides team will direct people to leave church a pew at a time.

As you leave church please go straight home without lingering in the churchyard or car park or talking to other households, and always keep 2 m for any other household.

It is advisable that the most vulnerable do not attend church.

The government specifically states that THERE SHOULD BE NO MINGLING between households in line with the 'stay at home' nature of Tier 4. So please refrain from chatting or standing near any other households even though this is so contrary to what we normally do as we gather for worship. A good way to be acting is to assume you have the virus and so does everyone around you - that way we will all ensure we keep everyone safe.

Becky, with the clergy team and wardens, will keep the situation under review. It may well be that we have to close the church and move back to online services in the near future, but we will inform you all of that if that happens.