Returning to our buildings

A small first step in returning to our buildings

This Sunday we are taking a small but significant step in returning to our church buildings.  From Sunday 19th July we will be holding a service of Holy Communion in St Michael’s.  

We’re only able to do this if we follow government and church guidance so that we’re both legal and people are safe.  This means that we are limited as to who can be in church and so we will be keeping our ‘on-line’ services for the foreseeable future to help people engage with worship whether they can be in church or not.  

From this next Sunday our pattern of worship will be as follows:

9am Holy Communion from St Michael’s
-limited to 15 households of up to 3, places to be booked in advance.
-this will be ‘live streamed’ on church facebook page (available from this time, including for those used to 10am service).

11am Service of the Word on Zoom and Dial-in
-with different contributors for Reading, Prayers, Sermon
-with the choir leading us in hymns 
-with the opportunity to chat afterwards in 2s&3s in ‘breakout rooms’

11am Young Church on Zoom 
-please contact the parish office if you want to be a part of this.

If you are able and would like to come to our 9am service in church please book in for this by calling the parish office on 0770 7043395 between 10 and 2 on a Tuesday or Thursday.   

We will be allocating seating on a first come first served basis, if there is no space on a particular week we will allocate seating for future weeks to people who have been unable to attend because of lack of availability.  We will also need you to give us a contact telephone number for ‘track and trace’ purposes.

We recognise this is a very different way of doing church and it feels very strange to be having to take this approach but this is a small first step to our returning to our buildings.  We remain committed to retaining our on-line ways of being church in this time of transition.   
Please continue to keep our leadership team in prayer as they seek to help us navigate through these times.  

Some Information that may be helpful

1. What is going to be different when I come to church?
We have to make sure socially distancing is kept in church – this has necessitated removing many of the pews and introducing a ‘one-way system’ around the church building.  We are also limited in what we can do in church and need to have a shorter liturgy, we are unable to sing hymns nor can we meet in the meeting room or serve refreshments.   

2. Where can I sit in church?
Our seating in church is limited to 15 pews which can seat up to 3 people (who must be from the same household or ‘bubble’) – we need to know in advance contact details for who is coming into a service (we keep these for 3 weeks) for ‘track and trace’ purposes.

3. If I am unwell or clinically vulnerable can I come to church?
People who are self isolating or who have symptoms of coronovirus should not attend church.  People who are clinically vulnerable will be at increased risk and those who are clinically extremely vulnerable have been advised not to attend large gatherings but the decision to come to worship is theirs alone.  Masks can be worn but, at this stage, they are not obligatory.

4. Can anyone come to church?
Yes of course but we are limited in our numbers and people must book in advance .
5. In what other ways are our buildings open?
Our church building is also open for funerals at present.  We have further planning to do before agreeing our approach for opening for weddings & baptisms as well as our Newbottle Street building for our Space4 project.

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