FAQ - Sunday Services during Restrictions (Updated 3rd July)

FAQ - Coming to church during the current restrictions

Coming to church during the current restrictions is very different to what we are used to, and we are having to adapt to a new way of doing things. Governenment, Church of England, and Diocesan advice changes regularly and we will update this page accordingly. Here is what coming to church looks like at the moment. 

Should I wear a face covering

In line with government instructions on the wearing of masks in public places, the current Church of England guidelines are that face coverings should be worn at all services in church.

Do I need to book?

At the moment, no. However, because the numbers allowed in a church have to be restricted in order to maintain social distancing many churches have instituted a booking system. If we do this the Diocese are recommending that we use Eventbrite for this purpose. This Sunday we will monitor attendance, but as we expect numbers to increase over the coming weeks it is highly likely that at some point in the near future we will have to introduce a booking system. Currently we estimate we can cope with around 50 people allowing for some families sitting together. In the unlikely event that too many people attend the service we will, regretfully, because of the need to enforce social distancing, need to ask some people not to come in. Hopefully that won't happen.

What does the church look like?

In order to maintain social distancing many of the pews are taped off so they cannot be used.We also have a one-way system in place. There are floor stickers to indicate the direction to walk in, and also floor stickers to ensure social distancing while queing to receive communion.

Do I need to register my attendance?

As you are probably aware many venues now reopening are being asked to keep a register of people attending to help with NHS Track and Trace. The government have not made this compulsory but they are recommending that we operate a system of registration for all our services to help in case we subsequently become aware that someone who tests positive for Covid-19 has attended a service. We are still working out the best way of doing this but if we introduce this you will be asked for your name and a contact number. We will keep the records securely in the church safe for three weeks and then destroy them. All record keeping will conform to GDPR.

Where can I sit?

The pews where you can sit are clearly marked. You can sit where there is a green tick. Don't sit where there is a red cross.

Can I sit with my family?

Providing you are in the same household you may sit together.

What about bringing my children?

Your children are very welcome. You can sit in any of the designated seats. You may want to bring toys or books with you to keep them entertained. The children's area at the back is open for you to sit in though you must, of course, maintain social distancing. It is currently free of toys and books as these would need cleaning after every use, so again feel free to bring your own as long as you take them home again. And in case you were wondering, we don't mind in the least if children make a noise because that's what children do - we want them to feel at home.

What happens when I arrive?

As you arrive remember to maintain social distancing. There is a board with a poster just inside the door which we ask you to read. Sanitise your hands using the sanitiser provided, pick up a service sheet from the table, and find a seat. When you leave drop the service sheet in the box provided, and sanitise your hands again.

How do I get around the church?

It's a one way system so we can maintain social distancing. Go into the centre of the church and up the centre aisle to find a seat. The side aisles operate in the opposite direction. So, for example, if you wish to sit at the sides you need to go up the centre aisle and then back down the side aisle. Leaving the church is the same - follow the correct directions to leave via the side aisles.

Can I light a candle?

Yes. the candles are all laid out so you can pick one up without touching any others, Please maintain social distancing as you light candles.

How does receiving communion work?

Follow the one-way system and come forward up the centre aisle while keeping the correct distance from the person in front. Come forward one by one to the priest in the centre of the altar step. Do not kneel. The priest will administer communion - bread only - and will be wearing a mask and gloves for your protection. If you require a blessing then the priest will do so without actually touching you. Of course, if you are with your children, you can all come forward together.

 


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