We expect that for many (maybe all) of us adjusting to worshipping together again is going to be harder than we might expect. It will feel very odd sitting with gaps in between us. It will feel even odder not being able to mingle and chat in the hall. And we have all just lost the habit of being together and joining in together in the worship of God. So here are some things to help:
- Services will be shorter; no more than an hour.
- Anyone will be welcome to come and go at any point. Parents with young children may especially find this helpful.
- Parents are welcome to do whatever else they think will help their children start to re-learn being part of worship. They will also be responsible for helping their children maintain social distance.
To limit the risks of spreading the virus, we pave put in place the following measures.
- Please don’t come to church if you have any symptoms of Covid-19, or have had in the last 7 days, or if someone in your household or bubble has had in the last 14 days.
- Anyone who develops symptoms during a service should let someone know and leave for home. There's no need to wait to the end of the service.
- We won’t allow more than 1/3 of the capacity of the Hall (which means 83 people) in at one time. All rows are at least 2m apart.
- Doors will be fixed open so no-one need touch door handles.
- Windows will be open to maximise ventilation.
- When you come to church, please:
- Sanitise your hands on the way in
- If you haven't booked in advance, please give your name and a number for contact tracing
- Follow the one-way system in and out of the building
- Fill up rows from the far end. Larger groups should use shorter rows.
- Leave 3 empty seats between household / bubble groups in the same row.
- Sit down as soon as you come in, and leave promptly after the service is over. The front door will open 15 minutes before each service.
- Make use of the overlap half-hour 11-11:30 to chat to people in the garden, and it’s fine to do so after the second service finishes at 12:30 as well. Remember though to keep at least 1 metre, and preferably more, between households.
- Although we are keen to sing again, we have decided to follow government guidelines and not sing together yet. This is a big loss, and we pray for it to be possible very soon; worshipping God without singing is a great shame!
- If you wish to wear a face covering, you are welcome to do so. Those who distribute the Lord’s Supper will be wearing them, as will some welcomers.
- We will be celebrating the Lord’s Supper, with very careful preparations. Bread will be pre-cut, the wine will be in individual cups, those preparing them and distributing them will sanitise their hands. Nothing will be passed along the rows.
- Similarly we will not take an offering during the service, but will have somewhere to place gifts on the way out; or better, we encourage giving via Churchsuite or online.
- The Hall we be cleaned every week, and all door handles, doorposts, handrails and chair backs will be disinfected between services.
- Toilets will be available, and will be carefully cleaned. We ask people to plan ahead so as to be able to use them as sparingly as possible.