Third National Lockdown
Greetings, grace and peace, dear saints.
Following the announcement by our Prime Minister Boris Johnson, earlier this week, we have been engaging in conversations to consider what would be appropriate for us at Emmanuel Church. We have taken a lead from our District Chair Rev Andrew de Ville who has counselled in his most recent communication that although it is permissible to be open as a church during this current lockdown, might we … consider taking a more cautious approach and not open/re-open for acts of communal worship. This is not simply to protect the health of congregations but to set a positive example to wider society in following the advice to 'stay at home' …
The decision has therefore been taken today to close our building at this time in line with our District Chair’s advice to ‘set an example to our wider society’ particularly the community in which we are placed. As a consequence our ‘Open for Prayer’ sessions due to resume this Friday 8th January and our planned Covenant services for this Sunday January 10th will now not take place, all future church worship services will be suspended until we hear the next government statement in February.
I am personally very grateful to the stewards, office holders and numerous volunteers who have helped to create a safe space at Emmanuel for our ‘Open for Prayer’ sessions since July 2020 and then to facilitate our face to face services from October. They have all worked so hard to take on board all the government guidance and to advise and put into practice every measure possible for those entering our building. The prime objective is always to put health and safety first as we faithfully love and serve everyone who has entered our church home. Thank you each and every one of you for your support, great care and commitment.
In the absence of our prayer sessions and services at Emmanuel, our Circuit service will be on our website each week, with links to it also on our Facebook page or you can go to the Circuit website directly. There are services available online from Westminster Central Hall in London and Wesley’s Chapel, both of whom are Methodist. There are of course many other resources online for services of all denominations and worship styles.
The church building may be closed but the Church Family is not! We will continue to keep in touch via telephone, Zoom, email and old fashioned, but very precious, Royal Mail! We are also here to provide practical and prayer support as we journey onwards together.
God bless you and keep you and remember Emmanuel, God is with us!
Friday March 20th, 2020 - A PASTORIAL LETTER in this time of Crisis