Church is changing for a while but church is not closed!
Dear Friends, These are anxious times, as the UK responds to the threat of the Covid-19 virus. You will know by now that all public worship is suspended until the risk of spreading infection has lessened. However, we are still church, even if we can’t meet in traditional ways at the moment. We should keep praying and worshipping! Now is the time to pray hard for those who are ill and those who are having to self-isolate because of age or underlying conditions. We need to pray for those who are working so tirelessly to help those suffering from the illness and all those trying to find ways to stop the spread. We also need to hold those in our community working to support those who are ill or in self-isolation in prayer. Look out for the “SAFE” posters and publicity that will be coming out soon, as the Stivichall and Finham community coordinates its approach to this.
St Martin’s is involved in this community work but also continues to pray and worship and to draw together—even though we may have to do so from our own homes or privately in the church building, which will be opened each day for this purpose.
We are determined to maintain our regular patterns of worship so will be live streaming worship on Wednesdays at 10am (check our Facebook page to catch up on our first attempt this week!) and on Sundays at 11am. We also hope to stream our usual Morning Prayer on Saturday mornings. For those who can’t access the internet, we will be producing packs for each weekend, to share some of the prayers, readings and some of the sermon content for the Sunday service so that everyone can worship together, whether on– or offline. More on this to come!
Matt is due to be on leave for some of this week but will be working and available as normal by next Monday (30th) and Abby will be working normally, within the constraints of the advice on social distancing. Do phone or use email if you need to talk to someone. Church is changing—but church is not closed. We can still pray and worship together and look after each other and our neighbour. We should be careful but not fearful. After all, God is our refuge and our strength.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)
Rev Matt Taylor and Rev Abby Rhodes