Official Methodist Guidance updates
Update issued on 12 May 2020
A statement from the Revd Dr Jonathan Hustler, Secretary of the Conference:
Methodists have missed being able to gather for worship in church buildings over the last two months and look forward to the resumption of public worship when it is safe for this to happen.
The Church’s commitment to the pastoral care of its members and others has been at the forefront of our response and will continue to be. During the lockdown many congregations have shared in internet-based services, usually broadcast from manses, following strict social distancing rules, and many people have continued to worship in their homes. Church communities have been creative in preparing worship materials and nationally we have a dedicated phone line for those who are not connected to the internet.
The increased number of broadcast services on radio and television has helped to mitigate some of the sense of deprivation that people feel from a loss of fellowship. We would hope that those programmes continue to be scheduled as not all will be able to attend public worship even when all restrictions have been lifted.
We recognise the paramount importance of the safety of members of the public and understand that any change to the current restrictions must be made with care.
March 2020. Last week some difficult decisions were made and adapted. almost daily, in light of advice received from Government and also the Methodist Church.
On Saturday morning the Circuit Leadership Team met whilst the government was closing down café’s, restaurants, pubs and all kinds of meeting places in an attempt to prevent people meeting together and spreading the Coronavirus.
Against this background we have decided that our churches must now remain closed to any opportunity for people to meet, that means we will, for the foreseeable future, not be providing prayer spaces. It goes without saying that we cannot allow any meetings to take place on our premises and this will remain the case until the government relaxes its guidelines and begins to allow the reopening of places for people to meet.
As a church we want to serve our communities and to be there for our neighbours and I have been impressed by the resolve of individual churches to demonstrate this. At the moment, by keeping our premises closed we are doing our bit to restrict the opportunities of the virus spreading.
The Circuit Office will be continuing to send out the, somewhat diminished, weekly notices and also an updated information sheet providing information on how we can continue to worship at home.
I continue to hold you all in prayer and believe that God will continue the work that he has begun in us and amongst us.
Rev Graham Morgan
North Yorkshire Coast Methodist Circuit
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