What does church look like when its closed?
Church is more than the building – it’s the people. The main word for church used in the New Testament is “ecclesia” which translates as “assembly” or gathering which needs people. Church is people first and foremost. So how are we gathering now?
Well we have had Zoom Café Church using Powerpoint, musicians, breakout rooms for discussions, shared short films and an opportunity to find out who needs help. We are also starting Zoom Coffee Socials, each Sunday from 11am where you can join us for coffee and a chat via your computer or by phoning in. Bring your own coffee, tea etc!
We have been sending out the Isolation Times to keep people up-to date as well as out weekly E-Newsletter. There is lots of information on our website including our recorded services on the Virtual Church page as well as our ‘live’ services via Zoom in the Virtual Chapel. Every Thursday evening at 6pm on Zoom we have Evening prayer with the third Thursday being Zoom Celtic prayer. We also sendweekly email prayers.
In our communities, we have been joining in with Thursday night 8pm “Clap for Key Workers and NHS” on our doorsteps.
We have been supporting those who are bereaved and have small funerals. We made videos for school children each week with crafts and story time.
Here are the most up to date church guidelines as of 13th May.
Bishop Graham’s New Guidelines for the use of Church Buildings:
For the One Named person (churchwarden or local vicar) in each Church to:-
• to pray the Daily Office and/or celebrate the Eucharist on behalf of the community they serve;
• to live stream or pre-record worship;
• to ring one bell to mark prayers being said or mark events (e.g. Clap for Carers, VE Day anniversary); or
• to check the fabric of the building.
So church is very much alive and kicking in fact more people are joining in with church, gathering virtually and looking at what prayer is. I’m happy to receive any questions, please do contact me.
God Bless, Helen