Feeling our way

Part of the reflection in the lastest post at Bronte Virtual Church (brontevirtualchurch.blogspot.com) is:

We feel our way towards what provision for private prayer and public worship in our church buildings should mean. 

Although we tell ourselves that we have kept a level of contact and communication with about the 130 households with closest association with our three churches, we keep coming across those who have not picked up the messages we put out, sometimes for quite a while.  The same will be true for those in the wider community despite social media, press releases and old fashioned notices on church doors.

And there will be perhaps significant numbers who feel cautious or reluctant to venture towards any level of social interaction or gathering which isn’t strictly necessary.
So less than a dozen people have accessed the ‘open for private prayer’ times we have had for the last three weeks, although some of those have done so regularly.

And fourteen different people attended the first of the small devotional Communion services we held in the Haworth parish (at St Gabriel’s on Sunday afternoon and St Michael’s on Monday evening), compared with thirty-five people who did so on the last Sunday we held such services in that parish at the beginning of March. 

We told them that we do not necessarily think that the pattern we have established for July and August is going to prove the perfect one – as we explore following it through and paying attention to take-up and any feed-back.  We asked them to let others know how carefully the services are being conducted in terms of small numbers, two meter social distancing and sanitisation.

We continue to provide set times when the churches are open for private prayer at present:

Sundays – 2.00 pm to 4.00 pm – St Gabriel’s, Stanbury

Mondays – 6.00 pm to 8.00 pm – St Michael’s, Haworth

Wednesdays – 9.00 am to 11.00 am – St James’, Cross Roads

Fridays – 11.00 am to 1.00 pm – St Michael’s, Haworth

We will begin to celebrate Communion for small congregations prayerfully and safely, initially as the last half hour of the weekly prayer times

Sundays – 3.30 pm – St Gabriel’s, Stanbury – beginning 12th July

Mondays – 7.30 pm – St Michael’s, Haworth – beginning 13th July

Wednesdays – 10.30 am – St James’, Cross Roads – beginning 15th July

Fridays – 12.30 pm – St Michael’s, Haworth – beginning 17th July

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