Covid 19 precautions March 2020
All of us are being affected in one way or another with the precautions to face the challenge of coronavirus. The Church is no exception to this. Many of you will be aware of the letter sent out by our Archbishops on Tuesday 17th March. They have asked for several measures to be taken by all churches including the putting of public worship on hold. I have attached their letter as a PDF for you to read but the immediate impact on our Parish will be this:
•From Wednesday 18th March public worship in all three of our churches (St. Mary’s, St. Paul’s and St. John’s) will be put on hold until such time as we are told it is safe to resume.
•We are looking into ways that the congregations can be united through social media and streamed services and once this pattern has been formalized, we will let everyone know how they can be involved.
•We are committed to trying to help both our congregations and the wider community in whatever way we can to maintain spiritual, mental and physical health throughout this time. If there is anything you think we can help with, please do ask. We will do our best to keep in touch with everyone and provide whatever Pastoral Care is possible. To do this effectively we need to have up to date contact details (e-mail and phone) and we ask that you check that we do have your latest details.
•All church meetings are postponed but every effort will be made to carry out the work they do through other means such as e-mail or online conferencing if possible.
•We will be contacting all those with Baptism’s and Weddings planned to let them know how the changes will affect them.
Our Archbishops also invited clergy to maintain the ancient pattern of daily prayer and, where possible, the eucharist – live streaming their worship if they have the resources to do so.
And they urged congregations to be in the forefront of providing practical care and support for the poorest and the most vulnerable during the crisis.
“Being a part of the Church of England is going to look very different in the days ahead,” they wrote.
“Our life is going to be less characterised by attendance at church on Sunday, and more characterised by the prayer and service we offer each day.
“We may not be able to pray with people in the ways that we are used to, but we can certainly pray for people. And we can certainly offer practical care and support.
“Please do carry on supporting the local foodbank and buy extra provisions for it. Ensure the night shelters wherever possible are kept open. There are many very encouraging schemes happening right across our country in communities to focus on caring for the most vulnerable and do continue to play your part in those.
“Then by our service, and by our love, Jesus Christ will be made known, and the hope of the gospel – a hope that can counter fear and isolation - will spread across our land.”
They added: “This is a defining moment for the Church of England. Are we truly being a church for all, or just the church for ourselves?
“We urge you sisters and brothers to become a different sort of church in these coming months: hopeful and rooted in the offering of prayer and praise and overflowing in service to the world.”
The archbishops have joined other church leaders in calling for a day of prayer and action this Sunday (Mothering Sunday) particularly remembering those who are sick or anxious and all involved in health and emergency services.
With every Blessing
Hugh, Vicar of Mirfield.
[email protected] 07972107146 01924 505790 Facebook The Mirfield Team Parish