Re-opening the Church for private prayer

25 Jun
Dear All,
 
We have now received permission from the diocese to open the church for private prayer at the following times: Mondays 10.30am -12.30pm, Wednesdays 4pm – 6pm, Saturdays 10.30am – 12.30pm, Sundays 3pm – 5pm. Seven people will be allowed in the church at any one time and social distancing of 2 metres must still be observed. Hand sanitiser must be used on entry and exit and there is a single directional walkway which is indicated. So the first opening for private prayer will be this Saturday 27th June from10.30am – 12.30pm. 
 
The Prime Miinister has said c hurches will be able to open again from 4th July, for public worship. I do  not know at this stage how this will work. Bishop Patrick has sent out an email to the clergy about this. Here is an extract:

“Before I can send out to you clear guidance on how we shall open our churches again for public worship, after 4th July, I must wait to receive all the appropriate guidelines to be followed from the Bishop’s Conference Secretariat, who have been working with the various government agencies on how best this can be done. The Secretariat are now just waiting for final approval of this document. I hope that in the next few days I shall be able to share all the appropriate information with you.”

What is certain though as we look towards reopening our churches after 4 th July, is that every church that may wish to open for public worship will need to be able to fulfil all the various government requirements with regard to stewarding, hygiene and social distancing. Permission will only be granted for public worship to resume in a church that has put in place all these government requirements, and completed a full Risk Assessment, in order that we may keep our congregations safe, and to help to avoid the spread of the corona virus.”
 
I thank you all for your patience. 
 
God bless you all.
 
Fr Paul