Sixth Sunday after Trinity
Dear all – I hope that you’re all keeping well and safe, as restrictions ease and we start to take tentative steps towards doing some more of those things we took for granted before lockdown. I’ve never looked forward so keenly to a haircut and a visit to the dentist!
There was no newsletter last week because I was taking a short ‘staycation’ with the rest of my family. The weather wasn’t great, but it was good to take a break. I hope that many of you too will get a chance in the not-too-distant future to have a change from current routines.
Remember that this is YOUR parish newsletter, so if you have any news to share or items of interest or encouragement, please contact me by TUESDAY each week.
Update on re-opening church buildings
Last Sunday 12th July, both St Mary’s and St Andrew’s opened for periods of private prayer (9.30am to 10.30am at St Mary’s, and 2pm to 4pm at St Andrew’s). There were 3 visitors to St Mary’s, and at least 23 to St Andrew’s. The format for visiting each place worked well, and seemed to be appreciated by those who came. They will be open at the same time this coming Sunday, 19th July. From Sunday 26th July, St John’s will also be open between 11am and 12 noon for private prayer. This is an important step in communicating to our communities that the Church is still alive and there for all. In Kildwick, the restarting of the church clock has been another audible sign that church buildings are gradually starting to be used again!
Re-opening church buildings for Sunday worship
At its meeting this week the PCC discussed the next stage of reopening for worship. We agreed that we want to hold worship services as soon as possible, commensurate with a proper assessment of the risks involved (which the buildings reopening working will consider at their meeting next week). At the same time, we’re aware that the situation remains fluid, and could change again. As we move towards the autumn and winter, it is possible (even likely) that there will be a resurgence of coronavirus. We may see a reimposition of some restrictions – or people may just feel less able or ready to come to church. So the PCC would like us to develop other ways of worshipping alongside working towards reopening buildings.
Since lockdown started, I’ve led a service of Morning Prayer via Facebook livestream on Sundays at 10am. In recent weeks, the liturgy has been posted to those without internet access. Other alternatives include a service via Zoom (which would make it possible for other people to be involved in doing readings, leading prayers etc, and which could also include recorded hymns and songs), or a dial-in phone service (which could also involve a range of people in different parts of the service).
What do you think of these ideas? Do let me know.
If you have any prayer requests that you would like to share, please let me know (if it’s for another person, please ensure they are happy for the request to be included).
Please pray for Arden and Hannah, who are getting married at Cononley on Saturday 18th July.
With my love, and with every blessing