After a gap of four months I am very pleased that we can once again worship in our church buildings on Sunday mornings. The wardens and PCCs have been working very hard to plan a safe return adhering to govt. and national church safety guidelines. We are also very much aware that a proportion of our worshipping congregation will not be able as yet to return to the buildings, and for some this may never be possible.
During these last four months we have enjoyed services of worship that have been truly inclusive, allowing every member to participate on equal terms and welcoming back people who have been unable to worship with us for some time. I have experienced this as a joy and a blessing and I hope you have too. It has taken Covid-19 to remind us, if we had forgotten, that public worship should be open to everyone; no-one should be excluded.
We shall continue to hold services of worship by telephone as long as two or three wish to gather together in this way.
Initially, we are asked to limit the number and length of services in order to minimise the risk of infection spreading among gathered congregations. For this reason we are opening quietly with one service of Holy Communion each Sunday. This will also give the churches time to close the buildings for a sufficient interval to neutralise the virus, should it be present, without extensive cleaning. Over time we hope that there will be a service of some kind in each church every Sunday. The church buildings are of course open at specific times for private prayer - please see the church websites on achurchnearyou.org for details.
Please carefully follow the safety instructions of sidespersons as you enter the building - they are there to help you keep safe:
- Sanitise your hands when you enter and leave the building
- Give your name and contact details if requested - this is for Track & Trace - details will be kept for 21 days and then destroyed
- Respect the 2m social distancing rule and sit where you will be directed
- Follow the one way circulation around the building
- Remain seated until you are invited to receive Holy Communion
- At the end of the service please leave immediately - do not linger to chat inside the building
- Leave your order of service on the seat where you have been sitting
I’m afraid we are not allowed to sing, raise our voices or physically exchange the peace. Holy Communion will be distributed in one kind only. This grieves me, but is for your protection.
In order to accommodate both services I am asking everyone to be flexible in service times.
Services on Sunday
9am Telephone worship – Service of the word
10.30am Mission Community Holy Communion:
19 July St Mary, Dunsford
26 July St James, Christow
2 Aug St Michael & All Angels, Dunchideock
9 Aug St John the Baptist, Ashton
16 Aug St Thomas Becket, Bridford
23 Aug St Michael, Doddiscombsleigh
Please note the new times
9:00am Telephone Service of the Word (dial 0333 0110 616 and enter 334 7721 when asked)
10:30am Mission Community Holy Communion