COVID-19 changes to worship

These are the changes to worship and please so we’ve put together a video where you can see further how things will look:

Guidance for worship

  1. We are now required to wear face masks in church during services, however there are the following exemptions. You do not need to wear a face covering if you are suffering from physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability, if putting on, wearing or removing a face covering will cause you severe distress, if you are providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading to communicate or you are a child under the age of 11.
  2. The church will be open 20 minutes prior to the service. Please do not arrive late.
  3. When you arrive you may be asked to wait until the porch is clear of the person in front of you. Both doors will be open so you do not need to touch handles or the doors themselves.
  4. When you are able to come into the porch your name and address will be taken. This is for the purposes of contact tracing and the information will be kept for 21 days. Please do not come to the church if you have any symptoms of Covid-19. You must let Rev Ruth know if you develop symptoms following the service for the purpose of contact tracing and hygiene.
  5. Once you have given your name and address you will be asked to sanitise your hands before entering the main building. You do not need to wear a face mask but if you would feel more comfortable to do so then please do.
  6. Please then follow the one way system to your seat. You will need to walk down the side aisle towards the remembrance corner, across the back and into the centre. This is where the chairs will be placed.
  7. Once seated please remain in your place.
  8. Chairs will be set up so that households can sit together but there will be a 2metre distance between them – to the side, in front and behind.
  9. To this end the maximum number of people to any service will be 41.
  10. Unfortunately and sadly, unless you can guarantee your child is able to sit in their seat for the whole of the service they will not be able to attend. This is obviously a horrible decision to make and we hope, in time, to be able to welcome them back into their church building.
  11. There will be no singing during the services but at the 10am service we will listen to music during the worship.
  12. You will have an order of service but please take it home with you and recycle it.
  13. The peace will take place using sign language. You will also be asked to re-sanitise your hands at this point. Those leading worship will also re-sanitise their hands at this point too.
  14. Communion will be in one kind only – so you will receive bread only. Whoever is presiding will drink the wine on behalf of us all. The wafers will be at a safe distance from whoever is presiding as we speak the words of consecration over them.
  15. In order to receive the bread you will be invited to come forward to two standing stations, household by household, person by person. When we come to you please extend your arm out fully. We will extend our arm out fully too and we will drop the bread into your hand. We will then stand back from you before we say the words – ‘the body of Christ broken for you.’
  16. If you come for a blessing we will be unable to touch you but will pronounce blessing upon you from a safe distance.
  17. Once you have received your bread you will then return to your chair.
  18. We are unable to light real candles as the combination of hand gel and naked flame is not good! However, there are posters in the church (see attached) that will allow you to light a virtual candle if you would like to do so. The Paschal candle will also be lit at every service to remember those who have died and to also allow you to have a focus for those you are remembering and giving thanks for as you sit in the church.
  19. At the end of the service you will be asked to leave in orderly fashion moving back towards the entrance where you can sanitise your hands one more time before leaving.
  20. If you wish to stand and talk with others after the service please do this in the grounds and be mindful of the social distancing rules. There will be no refreshments.

Speaking of ‘opportunity’ when so many have died and so many are grieving for the loss of so much seems crass but we do believe we have a huge opportunity to develop something we really think God is calling us to be together. By stripping everything back to the absolute essential we can then together begin the conversation of what is important to keep, what to let go of and what to look to. To this end Rev Ruth will be sending a survey to members of the church to enable us to start that conversation at the same time as we move forward with gathered worship.

Sunday service times:

10:00 Eucharist

Wednesday service times:

19:45 Wednesday Wonderings (on Zoom)

Thursday service times:

10:00 Eucharist

More info

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