It has been another eventful week after last Saturday's unexpected news that churches would be closed during the second lockdown period. This news came as a surprise, just before Remembrance Sunday and as we move forward into Advent season.
As I am sure you will all now be aware places of worship are not permitted to open until 2nd December - although each church can open for Private Individual Prayer and also for funerals (which can host 30 people). The Archbishop of Canterbury and other senior leaders are appealing to the government for permission to open the churches for Public worship, but as it stands today, this is still not possible. We will update you on any developments.
Tomorrow's Remembrance events have been modified and will be small affairs, without parades or public involvement. The British Legion suggest people stand on their doorsteps to mark their sign of Remembrance. Government guidelines say that if the public walk by they can stand to remember but must remain socially distanced.
Harlington Church - there will be no service in church following the small Remembrance Service at the war memorial. Robert has prepared a sensitive and informative recorded Remembrance Service which will be available for all the Quintet churches via the Church websites or Church Facebook pages and can be accessed by the usual service link, although we will circulate this to you later once the service is uploaded.
Chalgrave Church - a small group will gather at the memorial in the Church grounds at 9.30am for a short service to pay our respects and to lay poppy crosses in memory of those who died during the war. Social distancing must be adhered to and please also wear a face covering.
Toddington Village - there will be a small British Legion Service on Toddington Green from 10.45am. I understand that there will not be the laying of wreaths by the different organisations this year.
Toddington Church - no Remembrance service is possible as the church will be closed, but this week please lay a poppy cross or a painted remembrance stone within the stone cross marked out in the church grounds. (This is also part of the Toddington 'One Hundred Poppy Trail' to raise funds for the British Legion).
Tingrith Church - a short act of Remembrance at 9.30am in the church grounds with opportunity to lay a token of remembrance.
Westoning Church - 10.30am Private Prayer in church. A short act of Remembrance in the church grounds by the vicar at 11am. Markers of Remembrance can be laid by the Tommy, within the stone cross outline (crosses are available in the church porch).
This week there will be the following events:
Private Individual Prayer
Westoning Church - Private Prayer 12 noon, Wednesday (for one hour)
Chalgrave Church - Private Prayer 10.30am Thursday for an hour
Toddington Church - Private Prayer 10.30am Thursday for an hour
Harlington Church - Private Prayer 10am Thursday for an hour.
Tingrith Church - Private Prayer in church by request (please contact Nigel)
The Upper Room service on Sunday 6pm. Please contact Linda if you would like the access code to join the worship service.
Morning Prayer by zoom 9.30am Tuesday and Thursday. Link available from Linda.
Afternoon Tea gatherings (These will take place in the afternoon as the days are shorter, to enable folks to enjoy daylight as much as possible).
Toddington Church Wednesday afternoon 4pm
Harlington Church Wednesday afternoon 3pm
Westoning Church Thursday afternoon 4pm
Chalgrave Church Thursday afternoon 4.30pm
We as churches are also called by the Archbishops to pray each day for the nation. Links to led prayers are issued on the Church Facebook pages each day with led prayers at 6pm. Today we pray for all who are grieving, and all those living with illnesses and everyone struggling with mental health. (The link is also available on hashtag PrayerForTheNation on Instagram and the Archbishop of Canterbury on Facebook).
Do please let us know of any concerns or questions which you may have. We also please encourage you to let us know of any prayer requests so we can cover these.
With love and prayers to you all. Our thoughts are with you.
Linda and Nigel