Last updated - Thursday 21st July 2020
You can find Worship at Home resources here
As you are no doubt aware, restrictions were lifted across England from July 19th. This comes at a time when covid infection rates remain quite high, but also at a time when vaccinations have enabled those who previously felt extremely vulnerable can be more confident that any contact of Covid 19 is unlikely to put them in hospital or cause death, though, like any other virus, it can still be a very unpleasant experience. Clearly those with other serious underlying heath conditions may be more at risk. We have all learned that nothing is certain in times of a pandemic, and this pandemic is by no means over.
So how does this all work for churches? This link will take you to the statement on the Methodist website: Coronavirus Guidance for Property (methodist.org.uk). As my time, and Kim’s time is coming to an end in Salford, we will not be dictating to churches how they interpret this guidance in their own settings. We will not be in a position to do so.
It has been our advice all along to wait until September to welcome groups back into churches, which gives you a month or so to ensure that everything is in place to welcome them back safely. There have been exceptions of course - groups that individual churches have permitted to use the buildings even when worship was not taking place. A lot of groups don’t meet in August anyway.
In terms of worship, and any other things you might choose to do, from the beginning of August, I would just like to remind you that those who are members of church council are trustees of their building, with a duty of care for all who make use of the space in any way. Risk assessments were agreed by church councils in order to ensure that all are safe there. If you choose not to continue to follow the risk assessment then that has been your choice. Technically a church council is required to rescind a risk assessment, in the same way that approval was sought to put them in place. For most of our churches that will simply not be possible in the short time we have left here. I would prefer that you don’t make any significant decisions about church activities until your new minister has arrived and been consulted. It is also possible that the Government may issue further instructions any way. If you feel that advice would be helpful, please contact Phil East from the Circuit Leadership Team. (email@example.com) I hope and pray that how ever you choose to operate, that you remember those who are more vulnerable, and more cautious, and treat them with respect and love, as is fitting for followers of Christ.
Rev Clare Stainsby
We will continue to worship online service every Sunday at 10am (click here for details). We know that not everyone is able to access online video. Written transcripts are available for each service (go to the worship page, click on the service and there is a link at the bottom), and we are also able to provide DVDs of the weekly worship videos. To request one, contact Matt Collins.
The Methodist Church website has a number of useful resources which can be found at www.methodist.org.uk/about-us/coronavirus-guidance/
If you aren't already, we suggest you sign up to the Circuit Email Mailing list, so that we can ensure that you are kept up to date with any news and resources. - You can sign up at https://www.salfordcircuit.org.uk/mailing-signup