Pastoral letter - 6 March 2020
Dear Brothers and sisters
God be praised, I can announce that following advice from the diocese and the directors of public health, our PCC agreed that we shall re-open for public worship from Monday 8th March.
In practical terms that means our pattern of services for the rest of Lent will be:
Sunday (from 14th) 9.00am Mass, 10.30am Mass. 6pm Stations of the Cross online. (Palm Sunday 6pm online Chrism Mass)
Wednesday: 6pm Evening Prayer followed by silent prayer, 6.30pm Mass. 7pm Lent Study group (online)
Thursday: 9.30am Mass
Friday: Noon Mass
We are still not able to have choir or congregational singing, but at 9.00am and 10.30am on Sundays we shall have the benefit of organ music.
Sunday masses will be subject to the requirement to book in advance and numbers will continue to be limited.
Please please, do feel free to come on a weekday as an alternative to Sunday if either you cannot book or if you for any reason feel uneasy about Sunday attendance.
At our service we shall be subject to continued strict adherence to the rules and guidelines. In particular it is vitally important that we maintain social distancing, properly worn masks, and above all we must not congregate either before or after any Mass, including weekdays. On arrival there must be no pausing for chat in the narthex and certainly no gathering outside after Mass.
To aid this process, and though I shall find it hard, I shall no longer greet people on the way out after Mass.
Although we are still planning in the light of the new guidance, we will, thank God be able this year to celebrate, albeit in a slightly different way, the wonderful liturgies of Holy Week and Easter. As an added bonus, Bishop Philip will be coming to preside for us on Good Friday. Please do look out for news of the Holy Week services.
I do so look forward to seeing as many of you as possible very soon
With the assurance of my love and prayers,