Dear church family

Well, this COVID -19 thing is moving so quickly isn’t it! In the light of the Government’s advice and requests yesterday, and advice we’ve received from a number of sources, the deacons and myself have come to the reluctant conclusion that we should suspend all church events with immediate effect and for the foreseeable future. 

This means that we will not hold Sunday services or Thursday prayer meetings and all children’s clubs and other midweek meetings are cancelled (this includes 3L’s, men’s night, home groups, etc).

In the immediate this means, sadly, that we won’t be having Mothering Sunday together at church. But the chocolates are here – can we still get them out to all ladies? It also means that Easter is going to look very, very different. (No Easter egg hunt ☹) but other ideas are welcomed!

We are aware that this will have a profound impact on our life as a church family, but rather than a backwards step let me encourage us to embrace the opportunities this will provide. It will mean doing church differently, but in doing so maybe we’ll experience an even more authentic version of what it means to be church. In truth, what we’re about to enter into is the everyday experience of millions and millions of our brothers and sisters in Christ who are actually forbidden to meet. Although this is hard for them, many, many flourish and the church grows more in these countries than it does in our own! 

So although the building is closed we the church are very much open for business! This isn’t a time for ‘church’ to be put on hold, but more than ever for us all to be connected and involved in ways we haven’t thought of before. I think the potential is actually quite exciting!

We haven’t fully got our heads around what all this might look like, but here are a few things to be looking out for:

  1. Streaming some sort of service on Sundays 
  2. Opportunities to be connecting and caring for each other 
  3. Opportunities to be involved in caring for the local community in general (I’m joint coordinator for the village response to all of this and we’re looking for an army of volunteers – watch this space)
  4. Online activities for children – which can be fed back to be shared with the whole online church family (like show and tell time, but on the computer!) 
  5. Shared Bible readings – have a passage for the week which we all read and maybe comment on online
  6. Or maybe a Christian book we all read and then share observations?
  7. If you have any other suggestions please, please let me know; this is your church as much as it is mine so I’m very open to ideas as to how we can make this time of massive disruption work for our good and God’s glory.

Above all this – PRAY! Pray for those who get infected, pray for those caring for them; pray for our government and those advising them and pray that this whole sad time will cause the hearts of many to be turned to him. 

Watch this space – we’ll keep you posted!