11th July 2020
We began this lockdown in March and who would have guessed that it would have gone on this long? It was so sudden and has been so difficult for so many in our community and far beyond and I think all of us were left a little bemused and stunned. Over sixteen weeks have gone by and here we are living a new ‘normal’ and having to work out how we keep in touch and also how we move forward into the next chapter.
Not everything has been bad and we have managed to keep in touch in new and creative ways and we have supported people the best we could. Thank you for everything you have done to keep in touch with lots of phone calls, zoom calls, and continuing to produce and deliver our parish magazine. Thank you to the choir and their online rehearsals, quizzes and chats. Thank you everybody and if there are people who we haven’t contacted I am very sorry.
The latest Government advice is that from the 4th July places of worship can re open again for worship.
St Thomas’ is already open for private prayer on Wednesdays and Sundays at the moment and we are seeing people come slowly. back into church. On the 4th July we celebrated the wedding of Joseph and Amy which was very special despite restrictions to numbers and social distancing guidelines being in place.
At our online PCC meeting on Monday evening we discussed the possibilities of opening for public worship. As a PCC we came to the decision to delay opening for public services but we will continue to review this situation closely over the following weeks.
We are wanting to be cautious in our response as…
- we have many in the congregation who are over 70 years old and also vulnerable.
- Social distancing guidelines continue to be in place and we have very limited capacity in church to be able to welcome everybody back into church.
- we are called to clean any spaces after people have gathered in them to reduce the potential risk of spreading the virus. At the moment finding people who are safely able to do this is difficult.
We are continuing to provide Morning Prayer and Compline services on our Youtube channel ‘Worship from St Thomas’ and also we are starting to offer an interactive worship experience on Zoom for Sunday mornings. If you haven’t received an invitation to join the zoom service please contact me on email@example.com or tel: 0161 312 9861.
We also have teaching sessions planned over the coming week/s on the same Youtube channel with the opportunity to join in a live discussion each week. Again please contact me for further details.
For young families we have started to offer Bible Bedtime stories at 6.30pm on Sunday evenings via zoom. Again contact me if you are interested in further information.
The website is continuing to be developed with new resources added each week for all ages. Our Facebook page has lots of information on there and is a great way to stay in touch with people and the parish.
I look forward to the day when we can celebrate together once again in church.
Until then may God hold you close,
To access the Youtube channel please click this link https://bit.ly/2ynuqHq :-
Click “Subscribe” which will be in red – see picture below – (there is no cost involved) and you will enter the site where you will be able to (view my prayers.)
Once you have clicked “subscribe” it turns to “subscribed” and a notification bell appears to its right – see picture below.
To join in with my live prayers each day, click on the notification bell symbol. Following its dropdown menu click “All”. See picture below.
Then as each broadcast is starting you will get an invitation to click on the notification to join live.