The Archbishops and Bishops of the Church of England have urged everyone to follow the instructions given by the Prime Minister to stay in their homes in a national effort to limit the transmission of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
But they called on the Church to “continue to pray, to love, to care for the vulnerable”.
It follows the
It means all Church of England churches will close with immediate effect in line with the Government’s instructions. There will also be no Church weddings or baptisms.
Funerals at the graveside or in crematoriums can still take place, but only in line with the Prime minister’s Statement.
In a joint statement the bishops said: “In the light of the Government’s measures, announced by the Prime Minister this evening, we urge everyone to follow the instructions given.”
As you will all be aware, we are in unprecedented times, with a global-scale health emergency the like of which has never been seen before. This means that life has already changed, and it means the church has to change, too.
With immediate effect, all acts of public worship are suspended. So until further notice, there will be no public services in any of our churches. However, thanks to technology, we will be live-streaming an act of worship each Sunday at 10:30am – details to follow.
Although public acts of worship are cancelled, the church is still very much alive. Your church building remains open for private prayer, quiet time or lighting a candle.
Very soon, we will be launching a helpline number based in Cawston, but covering all of the villages in this group of parishes. This will be a number people can call to get additional help with shopping if they are self isolating, or just a friendly ear if they are bored-stiff from staring at 4 walls – this is being developed in conjunction with a wide range of people in the village including the school and local businesses.
Though we clearly face tough times, it is fantastic to see people pulling together. Remember to support our local businesses and keep abreast of the latest advice from the government website.
Revd. Andrew Whitehead