Coronavirus updates

current guidance

Car sharing

Some of us usually get to church by sharing lifts with others. Because of coronavirus, some people will not feel they are able to offer/receive this as they had before – they should feel OK to say, “Sorry, I’m trying to avoid being too close to other people still, so I can’t give you/receive a lift at the moment.”  Others, however may feel that at this stage they are comfortable giving/receiving lifts. This is an important part of gathering our church community together, but we should be doing so as safely as we can. The Department for Transport advice on car sharing is:
 

You should try not to share a vehicle with those outside your household or social bubble. 
If you need to do this, try to:

• share the transport with the same people each time
• keep to small groups of people at any one time
• open windows for ventilation
• travel side by side or behind other people, rather than facing them, where seating arrangements allow
• face away from each other
• consider seating arrangements to maximise distance between people in the vehicle
• clean your car between journeys using standard cleaning products – make sure you clean door handles and other areas that people may touch
• ask the driver and passengers to wear a face covering

 

Face Coverings

The latest government advice is face coverings must be worn while attending our church buildings, remembering that they are mainly intended to protect other people, not the wearer, from coronavirus COVID-19 and that they are not a replacement for physical distancing and regular hand washing.  We know that some people (for a variety of reasons) are unable to use face coverings but we hope that the majority doing this will decrease the risk of the virus for all.

Along with various other categories of people, children aged 11 & under are not expected to wear face coverings.

NHS Test and Trace

If you consent to us collecting your data for use by NHS Test and Trace (if asked), please fill in a card each time you attend, which you will find on your seat in church. We will keep these for 21 days before destroying them.

Thank you for your care.
In all of these areas we don’t sit in judgement on anyone! We understand that there are a complex variety of factors affecting our response to coronavirus; above all we want to enable you to worship God in the best way that we/you can at this time.

Coronavirus and our community

Following the prime minister’s announcement that places of worship are able to open again, we have been gathering advice, hearing from church members and preparing plans and appropriate risk assessments etc in order to open our church buildings as safely as possible.

We met as a PCC to decide on our dates and plans for reopening our church buildings.

From 12th July there will be a weekly service at Emmanuel Holcombe at 11am.

From 19th July there will also be a weekly service at St. Mary’s Hawkshaw (10.45am) and Emmanuel Church Centre (9.30am).

We understand that different people are in different situations around the need to keep away from other people and/or their sense of when they might be ready to return to our church buildings for worship, so we will continue offering our online services over the summer, and using parts of them in the worship in the buildings during this time. Please do join us online or in church this Sunday for worship, and if there is anything else that we can help you with, please do get in touch.

Please take a moment to fill in our survey to let us know where you are up to in this unusual season.

Here’s a prayer…

Lord Jesus, when you walked on earth
you healed the sick and stilled the storm;
We look upon our world and see its frailty and weakness.
We ask that you would look kindly on us,
Please help all who are sick and all who are confined
Please help all medical teams and care workers,
Please comfort the afraid, and those worried for their loved ones
Give us all faith above fear.
As we weep at sickness on earth,
May it remind us we are made for a new creation with you.
Amen.