Easing COVID-restrictions this summer
All this year the Risk Assessment Group (RAG) for the parish has been keeping an overview of all the complicated government regulations and guidelines, advice from the House of Bishops of the Church of England, and suggestions from the local authority. Following the move to “Step 4” of the easing of restrictions the RAG has made the following changes to our use of our church buildings:
- increased the numbers of people who may safely worship in our churches;
- maintained physically-distanced spaces in both churches for people nervous or unsure about returning to public worship;
- recommended the continuation, for the moment, of communion in one kind;
- encouraged people to continue to use face-coverings or mask in public worship;
- begun to plan the return to congregational singing in the autumn;
- begun to review our ceremonial (how we worship) for a change in the autumn;
- begun to plan a return to our customary furnishings and life of fellowship.
Our watchword in all these changes is to move carefully and with consideration for our local situation, while recognising the great advantages we have now over this time last year – the effects of double-vaccination and readily available testing means that we can feel safe and be safer than we were last year.
There will be another meeting of the RAG on 11 August where we will review the changes made since 19 July, and continue our planning for the future.
The return to full worship and fellowship is nearer now than when we first believed!